Opinion Letter No. 04-06
March 23, 2004
Disclosure of Court Abstracts
The Judiciary asked the OIP whether the UIPA requires
public access to court abstracts and miscellaneous criminal abstracts
of the Traffic Violations Bureau of the District Courts.
The Judiciary provided information to the OIP concerning
court abstracts, but not miscellaneous criminal abstracts (which
are apparently rarely used). Thus, with the Judiciary’s agreement,
this opinion is limited to the court abstracts.
The OIP opined that court abstracts are not subject
to the UIPA. The court abstracts are part of the nonadministrative
functions of the courts, and hence are not maintained by an “agency”
subject to the UIPA.
The UIPA governs the public’s right to
inspect and copy records maintained by an agency. See Haw. Rev.
Stat. §§ 92F-3 (definitions of “government record”
and “personal record”), 92F-11 (access to government
records), and 92F-21 (access to personal records) (1993). The UIPA
specifically defines “agency” to exclude “the
non-administrative functions of the courts of this State.”
Thus, the UIPA does not apply to records associated with the non-administrative
functions of the courts.