Requesting DHS Records

Colorado law addresses records access and requests for human services cases. Most records requests can be submitted to DHS following the process detailed below. “Discovery” for court cases are also considered records requests, and can be completed by working with your attorney. Pro se parents may contact their caseworker(s) to learn the process of requesting needed documentation.

The Custodian of Records will not release records or reports that were created by another agency, such as law enforcement, medical entities, etc. They also cannot speak to the existence of (or entitlement to) additional records under C.R.S. § 24-72-201 et seq. and 24-72-301 et seq. Other agencies must be contacted directly by the individual making the request.

The first 20 pages are $5; additional pages are $0.25 per page. This cost is the same whether you requested the documents be provided in disc or hard copy (paper) form. There are no additional charges for research, redaction, review, and other staff time.

Payment is expected at the time you pick up your records or before we release them to you electronically. Acceptable forms of payment include cash, check, or money order. The County does not accept credit or debit cards as payment.

If you seek records for your case, please download the Request for Records Form for submission. The form must be completed and submitted. It is important that those seeking records list the specific and exact information being requested (including referral/case number or numbers, time frame of incident, etc.).

The completed request form (with a copy of your ID) may be emailed to dhsrecordsroom@elpasoco.com. If you have questions about your records request, please call (719) 444-5630.

If you are not a parent to the client, your request will not be processed until DHS is in receipt of a court order showing you have legal custody/guardianship or a valid release/power of attorney signed and notarized by a parent.

Records requested through the DHS Records Department can take up to 30 days for fulfillment.

Colorado Open Records Act (CORA) Requests

In the spirit of open government and pursuant to Section 24-72-201 to 206 C.R.S., Colorado Open Records Act (CORA) requires that most public records be available to the public. Anyone can request information that is in the possession of a government office.

A “public record” may include writings made, maintained, or kept by our office. However, there are exceptions concerning records made available under CORA. Specific case information is not subject to CORA. Records and reports of child abuse and neglect are confidential and not subject to public disclosure pursuant to C.R.S. 19-1-307 with some exceptions. Generally, parties who are the subjects of a child abuse or neglect case with the Department of Human Services (DHS) are entitled to their/their children’s records. Please see “Requesting Records” above if you are seeking case-specific information as well as records needed for court cases (“Discovery”).

For public records, you must submit your request to the custodian of the record: the state, county or city office that actually holds the record itself. There is no central repository for public records or single office that fulfills public records requests in Colorado. For example, certain information about human services may be in the purview of the state, and not the County.

The El Paso County CORA policy is posted online and includes information about costs associated with requests. County policy allows the County to require 50 percent payment before proceeding on a request.