Clerk

Find clerk, including county, city, and circuit clerk, and clerk of court. Clerks provide information on public court records and legal documents, criminal, jail, and arrest records, marriage licenses, divorce, judicial, and probate records, businesses liens, notary services, real estate taxes and voter registration services.


What is a Clerk?

A clerk is an official operating at a specific level of government. There are county, city and circuit clerks, as well as clerks of courts. Clerks in their particular offices are responsible for providing information and managing records associated with legal documents. Responsibilities include managing public court records, criminal, jail and arrest records, marriage licenses, divorce filings, judicial and probate records, and business liens. Clerks also provide notary and voter-registration services as well as manage real estate taxes.

Clerks have been around in some form for many centuries. Today, a clerk works according to the rules set by the city, county or state. In an additional complexity, some states choose to let municipalities manage how clerk positions are created and used. That means their responsibilities may differ depending on geography.

Clerks are responsible for

  1. Managing records. This action can include records created on-site such as marriage applications, or those drafted by other agencies like birth records. Municipal clerks may also handle forms and legal documents related to court proceedings.
  2. Managing licenses and registrations. Some clerk offices are responsible for managing various licenses and registrations, predominantly for use by the public. These documents can include marriage licenses, notary public licenses, hunting licenses, and voter registration records.
  3. Organizing court schedules and dockets. A court clerk is often responsible for scheduling court cases and preparing associated dockets.
  4. Tracking meetings. Clerks can be responsible for recording the minutes of meetings.
  5. Archiving. Aside from managing records on-site, a clerk may also be responsible for following standardized archiving procedures for materials.

Are there different types of Clerks?

There are a variety of government clerks. In fact, the widespread use of the title across municipal and court offices can make the roles of a clerk somewhat difficult to pin down. However, every clerk has a primary function of holding and organizing records based on his or her area of responsibility.