Who Can Access Arkansas Public Records?
Most states outline their public records policy very clearly. Almost every state says that anyone in the country is allowed unlimited access to public records, with some states adding exceptions such as felons, commercial users, etc. Arkansas public records are a little more complicated.
According to Arkansas public records law, only residents of the state can gain access to public records. The hope was that the fewer people that have access to the records, the less they can be abused. However, federal law stepped in and a judge claimed that limiting the records to only those that live within the state is against the nature of the Freedom of Information Act, because those living out of state may still have legitimate reasons for needing that access.
So What is the Law Now?
Federal statutes overrule state statutes. So while Arkansas public records are still supposedly limited to only Arkansas residents within the law itself, the federal ruling wins out, and anyone, from any state, is allowed to access Arkansas public records whenever they want. You do not even need to have a reason for wanting the records. You simply need to request access and wait until the keepers provide you with the information you are looking for.