Protecting Privacy and Ensuring Access to Justice-Related Information: A Possible Way Ahead
Open Justice: an innovation-driven agenda for inclusive societies. Sandra Elena and Julio Gabriel Mercado (eds.)
16 Pages Posted: 17 Jun 2019
Date Written: May 24, 2019
The access to judicial related information (case records) is complex and different between law and practice. The freedom of information acts are analyzed in several countries (mainly at Latin America and India) and observed that the prevalent trend of FOIAs is to exclude judicial cases. The second and alternative trend including court records probably stars at Mexico and was followed by India and Latin American countries. Nevertheless the courts at India, Argentina and El Salvador reversed these laws and leave case record only accessible by procedural laws (with special restrictions). Brazil and Colombia appears as intermediate solutions.
The main reason to limit the access to court records is protecting privacy. Re-utilization and re-identification are added as arguments to restrict the dissemination of large databases of court records.
In this context open data movement impacts the judiciaries, but there exist only few exceptions of open data websites including datasets of primary court records (the open data websites contains mainly statistics and administrative records).
This paper analyzes alternatives and regulations to open judicial information. In addition is referred to the case of Argentina that recently launched the dissemination of (redacted) court records as open data.
Keywords: freedom of information acts, access to court records, anonymization
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