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Obtaining Copies of Documents from a Bankruptcy Case File

There are several ways to obtain copies of documents:

• Print Electronic Records from your Personal Computer using PACER

PACER stands for Public Access to Court Electronic Records. You may use PACER to print copies of documents, download documents to your own computer or search for information in your case. The PACER system is available days, nights and weekends.

Visit the PACER website (http://www.pacer.gov) for information on how to register for PACER and the fees for downloading court documents.

• Print Electronic Records at the Clerk’s Office from Public Computer Terminals

You can print electronic records from a Central District of Illinois case file from the PACER computer terminals located in each of our three offices. Click here for a list of the current fees and acceptable methods of payment.

• Submit a Written Request by Email or Mail

You may send a written request for copies from a Central District of Illinois case file by email or mail to the office where the case was filed. Click here for addresses, phone numbers and email addresses for each office.

Your request must include:

  •  Your name
  •  The case number or name of debtor(s)
  •  A description of the copies requested or document numbers

Once we receive your request, we will send you a statement of charges for the copywork. Click here for a list of the current fees and acceptable methods of payment.

After we receive payment, copies will be made and sent to you via email or first class mail. Please specify how you would like copies returned to you and provide the necessary information to do so. Your receipt will be sent by the method you specify.

• Obtain Copies from the Federal Records Center (only for cases filed prior to April 1, 2004)

This court began electronic case filing on April 1, 2004. Cases filed prior to that date might be available from the National Archives’ Federal Records Center (FRC) located in Chicago. Please note that the National Archives retains a representative sample of bankruptcy cases, but does not retain all cases. When you make a request for documents from the FRC, you will be informed of whether the case is still available.

Form NATF 90 is used to request bankruptcy case documents from the FRC. The form asks for a series of numbers to identify the location of a case. The FRC cannot locate files without this information. This information must be obtained from the Bankruptcy Clerk's Office where the case was filed. Click here for phone numbers and email addresses for each office.

To obtain the location numbers needed to complete Form NATF 90, your request to the court must include:

  •  Debtor's complete name at time of filing,
  •  Last four digits of debtor's Social Security number (if known),
  •  Debtor's case number (if known),
  •  Approximate year case was filed.

The court will provide the following FRC information to complete Form NATF 90:

  • Court Location,
  • Case Number,
  • Transfer Number,
  • Box Number.