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U.S. Public Record Databases

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Updated Jan. 10, 2014.

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Public records databases contains information filed with government agencies. This guide identifies several of the most commonly requested and used public records databases made available by federal government agencies.

Selected Public Record Databases


Campaign finance disclosure data search from the Federal Elections Commission: searchable.

Charities and nonprofits (exempt organizations) from the Internal Revenue Service: searchable.

Corporation filings from the Securities and Exchange Commission (EDGAR): searchable.

Hazardous waste sites from the Environmental Protection Agency (Superfund): searchable.

HUD/FHA refunds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

Inmate locator from the Federal Bureau of Prisons: searchable, from 1982.

Patents from the Patent and Trademark Office: searchable.

Sex offender registry from the Justice Department, with all 50 states, U.S. Territories, the District of Columbia, and participating tribes represented as of January 2012.

Toxics release inventory (release of toxic chemicals into the environment) from the Environmental Protection Agency: searchable.

Trademarks from the Patent and Trademark Office: searchable.

Trademark dispute documents from the Patent and Trademark Office: arranged by proceeding number.

Other Public Record Directories

These directories provide links to public record databases that are searchable by category and/or location.

Investigative Resource Center

Search Systems Public Record Locator.


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