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Public Records Request

The Office of Prosecution Services (OPS) is a state agency formed and governed by Ala. Code §§ 12-17-230, et. seq.  Below, in accordance with Governor Ivey’s Executive Order number 734, issued on January 26, 2023, you will find the public records policy for OPS and the DISTRICT ATTORNEYS’ OFFICES in the State of Alabama.

OPS public records policy

It is the policy of OPS and DISTRICT ATTORNEYS’ OFFICES, in accordance with the Alabama Open Records Act (ORA) found at § 36-12-40 and Executive Order number 734, to promptly provide Alabama citizens with public records upon request, subject to (1) the payment of reasonable fees, (2) applicable laws protecting sensitive information and (3) the interest of the general public in having the business of government carried on efficiently and without undue interference.


Submitting a public records request

You may submit a public records request to OPS by completing a public records request form, which is available here: OPS Public Records Request

[If not using a web-based form:] You may submit the request by emailing it to

Additionally, you may submit a public records request to DISTRICT ATTORNEY’S OFFICES by completing a public records request form, which is available here: District Attorney’s Offices Public Records Request

[If not using a web-based form:] You may submit the request by emailing it to


What to expect

OPS and the DISTRICT ATTORNEYS strive to respond as promptly as possible to all public records requests we receive consistent with the demands of our agency’s functions as determined by state law.

The nature of your request will dictate how promptly we respond. If your request very clearly identifies a specific, discrete document you are looking for, we will respond more quickly than if your request requires substantial staff time to process. A request will require substantial staff time to process if it requires difficulty in identifying and retrieving documents or taking measures to redact or otherwise withhold legally protected information.

There are two types of requests, (1) a standard request and (2) a time intensive request.  The anticipated response times and definitions for each can be found on the Summary of Response Times chart below.

In addition, OPS and the DISTRICT ATTORNEYS are permitted by state law to charge reasonable fees in connection with processing public records requests. OPS will notify you in advance of the fees you likely will incur as a result of your request.  However, pursuant to Executive Order number 734, unless waived by the Executive Director of OPS or the DISTRICT ATTORNEY, the following outlines the fees a requestor can expect:

  1. A standard minimum fee of $20.00 for processing the request and document search. This fee will cover the first hour required to process the request.
  2. An hourly fee of $20.00 for each hour (charged in 10 minute increments at a rate of $3.33 for each 10 minutes).
  3. A per page fee of $0.50 for copies produced on standard 8.5×11 paper. This fee will not be charged for any documents provided electronically.
  4. Any actual costs to accommodate the request (i.e., flash drive or other hardware, special paper sizes, etc.).


Please note, pursuant to Executive Order number 734, the intent is not to change or in any way affect the protections for sensitive or other nonpublic information under applicable law.  A request may be fulfilled in whole or in part, denied in whole or in part, or any public record documents may be redacted to protect sensitive and nonpublic information.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ):

  1. Do I have to be an Alabama citizen to request or receive documents/information?
    1. Pursuant to the ORA and McBurney v. Young, 133 S.Ct. 1709 (2013), out of state citizens do not have standing to request public records.
  2. Do I have to request specific records or can a general request be granted?
    1. Alabama law requires a requestor of public records to do so with specificity. Requests under the ORA must be reasonably specific. State v. Isbell, 985 So. 2d 446, 451 (Ala. 2007); Ex parte Perch, 17 So. 3d 649, 652 (Ala. 2009); Ex parte Gill, 841 So. 2d 1231 (Ala. 2002).
  3. Are there statutes that limit the information that can be disclosed?
    1. Once documents are identified, a state agency must review the content of those records to determine if it is lawful to disclose those items.  For example, state agencies are required by various provisions of law to review all documents for, and then redact or exclude, personally identifying information (Ala. Code § 41-13-7); criminal history information (Ala. Code § 38-13-8); information concerning security plans, procedures, assessments, measures, or systems (Ala. Code § 36-12-40); law enforcement and investigative materials (Ala. Cod § 12-21-3.1); and any “other records relating to, or having an impact upon, the security or safety of persons, structures, facilities or other infrastructures.” Id.

This list is not intended to be an exhaustive list and is provided only as examples of some statutes or rules that may prohibit the disclosure of information.  For other examples, also see Ala. R. Civ. P., Rule 45 and Rule 26; Ala. R. Evid., Rule 502; attorney work product; Ala. R. Crim. P., Rule 16; Ala. Code. § 12-21-3.1 and § 12-16-214, et. seq.

  1. Are there certain types of records that are not public information?
    1. The Office of the Attorney General for Alabama has also determined that, ordinarily, drafts, non-final documents, notes, and sensitive personnel records are not public records. Opinion to Honorable Vernon Bennett, Commissioner, Alabama Department of Revenue, dated June 20, 2017, A. G. No. 2017-036. The Alabama Supreme Court has also instructed that with regarding to public records requests, due consideration must be given to the interest of the general public in “having the business of government carried on efficiently and without undue interference.”  Stone v. Consol. Publ’g, 404 So. 2d 678,681 (Ala. 1981).
  2. Is the agency bound by a timeframe the requestor has given in the request?
    1. The time for compliance is not to be arbitrarily set by the requestor but should be a reasonable amount of time, see Opinion to Honorable Melvyn W. Salter, Chairman, Cherokee County Commission, dated April 21, 2008, A. G. No. 2008-73.  Executive Order number 734 outlines specific time frames and those can be found below in the Summary of Response Times section.
  3. Do I have to provide the reason I am requesting the documents?
    1. A person requesting the documents must have a legitimate purpose, see Opinion to Honorable Timothy B. Coe. Mayor, City of Wedowee, dated December 21, 1999, A.G. No. 2000-053; citing Holcombe v. State, 200 So. 739, 744 (Ala. 1941).

Further, as the Alabama Supreme Court held in Blankenship v. Hoover, 590 So.2d 245 (Ala. 1991), quoting Brewer v. Watson, 71 Ala. 299, 304 (1882), Randolph v. State ex rel. Collier. Pinckard & Gruber, 82 Ala. 527, 528-29, 2 So. 714, 715 (1887).

“It is not the unqualified [absolute] right of every citizen to demand access to, and inspection of the books or documents of a public office, though they are the property of the public, and preserved for public uses and purposes … [The] individual who claims access to the public records and documents, … can properly be required to show that he has an interest in the document which is sought, and that the inspection is for a legitimate purpose.

…The right of free examination is the rule, and the inhibition of such  privilege  when  the purpose is speculative, or from idle curiosity is the exception.

The public generally have the right of a reasonable and free examination of public records required by law to be kept by public officials except in instances where the purpose is purely speculative or from idle curiosity, or such as to unduly interfere or hinder the discharge of the duties of such officer.”

The OPS and DISTRICT ATTORNEY’S OFFICE public records request form, provided at the link above, has a space to be able to easily provide the purpose for the request.



You may contact OPS’ public records coordinator, Jeffrey R. Bradley, General Counsel, at

Additionally, if you have an ORA request for a DISTRICT ATTORNEY’S OFFICE, you may submit a request to Jeffrey R. Bradley, General Counsel, at who will forward the requests to the specified DISTRICT ATTORNEY’S OFFICE that is the subject of your request.