In today’s information age, we place a high value on the ability to access information. For this privilege, we can largely thank the Freedom of Information Act. This Act mandates that certain types of information and records be reasonably accessible. This allows us to check on the happenings of not only ourselves, but also of our government leaders, employers, business owners, and even neighbors. Among the records viewable are driving records.
A driving record includes the driving history of the person named on the record. This includes any speeding tickets, DUIs, or other moving violations. Viewing a person’s driving history could be very useful information. For example, if you are a parent and have hired a babysitter or nanny to watch your children, you may be curious to check their driving record before placing your kids in a car with them. Or, if you are a business owner who will be using a delivery person, knowing that person’s driving history before, or after you hire them could be important.
Even if you do not need to know the driving record of someone else, it is never a bad idea to check what type of information about you is available for others to see. Your driving history could be monitored by future employers or insurance companies, so it may be useful to know what is on your own record.
Driving records may be separated into two categories: records with personal information, and records without personal information. Records without personal information simply contain information related to a persons driving history, such as traffic tickets. In most states, any party requesting the information can access these records. To request the record, you may need to know the driver license number and full name of the person whose name is on the record.
However, records with personal information not only include the driving history, but also generally contain information including full name, address, date of birth, height, weight, eye color driver’s license number, medical and/or disability information, a photograph, and even social security number. Due to the detailed, sensitive, and personal nature of this information, the person named on the record may generally only access these records. The Federal Drivers Privacy Protection Act actually prohibits the release of such information to anyone other than the record holder except under certain situations, or exemptions. If a person or business is exempt under a law called the Federal Drivers Privacy Protection Act, then they have the right to access driving records that contain personal information. Exemptions include government agencies or records requests for use during a legal proceeding. Personal information records may also be accessed by a person or business who has been given express consent by the person named on the record. Express consent usually will require some sort of signed documentation.
If you are interested in viewing your driving records, or those of another person, you will need to search within the state where the person holds their license. To find online search resources or other ways to find driving records, you can use the search tools at the Free Public Records Directory. This site provides a directory of public records by state, so you can find exactly where to find these records in each state.