All states have official "statewide repositories" of criminal history information that include information contributed by the various county and municipal courts and law enforcement agencies within the state.[101] State repositories are usually accurate, but all states have provisions for the correction of errors that occur in the reporting and recording of criminal history information. Individuals may normally obtain their own records from the state, but to obtain the records of another person, a private individual will normally need to obtain a release from the subject of the record search.[102]
Arrest records provided on this public website or through its interface pertain to individuals who have been charged with a crime as an adult. All named offenders are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law. If expunged, the appropriate record(s) are removed. For information concerning the expungement process, visit: Police Records & Procedures
Most background checks involve looking at court records. These include criminal convictions, bankruptcies, divorces, marriages and more. And most of the information is public, which you can request for free. However, this usually requires setting up an account with the government website, filling out a specific records request form and waiting for a response, which can take days or weeks. Some courts also require you to submit records requests in person. This can take time, especially if you’re careful to make sure you’re getting records on the correct person.
There are a variety of types of investigative searches that can be used by potential employers. Many commercial sites will offer specific searches to employers for a fee. Services like these will actually perform the checks, supply the company with adverse action letters, and ensure compliance throughout the process. It is important to be selective about which pre-employment screening agency one uses. A legitimate company will be happy to explain the process. Many employers choose to search the most common records such as criminal records, driving records, and education verification. Other searches such as sex offender registry, credential verification, skills assessment, reference checks, credit reports and Patriot Act searches are becoming increasingly common. Employers should consider the position in question when determining which types of searches to include, and should always use the same searches for every applicant being considered for one.
In accordance with Latvian law, most criminal records are terminated after several years. The amount of time for this to occur is dependent on the nature and scope of the legal sanction for that crime. These cancelled records are still held in Information Centre records, and are readily available if the individual involved authorises the disclosure of the entire record.[65]
A chapter 13 bankruptcy is filed when an individual’s income is too high to qualify for chapter 7. This type of bankruptcy allows the individual to retain their assets and property while repaying the debt under a court’s supervision. The advantage of this kind of bankruptcy is it allows the individual to have the repayment terms determined by the court rather than the creditors.
Removal of Offences from the Record Judgements against an individual are not published on a Bulletin 3 certificate once the rehabilitation period has passed (depending on the severity of the conviction either three years for misdemeanours or five years for felony crimes, after the sentence was completed).[43] The records of the convictions will remain on the system but will not show on the request of a record. In the case of minors and children, these are removed from the Bulletin 3 once the individual concerned has reached 18 years and/or three years from the date the crime was committed.[43]
The Swedish Criminal Records Registry is administered by the Swedish National Police Board which regulates access to criminal records and the use of criminal background checks by employers.[94] The registry contains information on those who have been sentenced in criminal courts or summarily imposed a fine, who have had a restraining order issued against them, or in whose cases prosecution had been abstained from. Generally, the information is kept for five years if the offence was punishable by fine, and ten years if it called for other sentences and sanctions. For those aged under 18 at the time the crime was committed, information is kept for only three or five years depending on the type of punishment.[93]

Since the onset of the financial crisis of 2007–2010, the level of fraud has almost doubled and some experts have predicted that it will escalate further.[9] Background-checking firm Powerchex has claimed the number of applicants lying on their applications has been increasing since the summer of 2007 when the financial crisis began.[10] In 2009, Powerchex claimed that nearly one in 5 applicants has a major lie or discrepancy on his or her application.[11]
Arrest records can contain a significant amount of information. First, they will indicate why someone was arrested and when the arrest occurred. When searching for arrest records, most people are looking for evidence of violent crime, theft or fraud, and drug or alcohol violations. However, arrest records may reflect a number of different crimes, and, depending on jurisdiction, may even reflect business related or traffic offenses.
Mandated by the Brady Bill, the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) is used by the FBI to screen potential firearms buyers. Citizens who are currently ineligible to own a firearm under current laws may have the opportunity to have their firearms rights restored. Eligibility largely depends on state laws. In addition to searching the NCIC databases, NICS maintains its own index to search for additional disqualifiers from gun ownership. Private companies are not allowed access to this system for background checks.
Generally speaking, the disclosure of a criminal record is only released to the individual who committed the offense and only when that individual has handed power of attorney to another or they are declared legally incompetent may another successfully apply to receive the disclosure. Perspective employers are not allowed access to disclosure at any time.[43] Applications must be made through the Casier Judiciare National (National Judicial Record, CJN) and are free of charge. Applications can be submitted online, via email, in person or by post of fax but are limited to the CJN. Criminal record certificates cannot be accessed through a French consulate or embassy at any time.
In Malta, criminal records are held by the Criminal Records Office which is maintained by the Malta Police.[70] Individual criminal records can be obtained by requesting a Conduct Certificate from the Malta Police. Requests can be made in writing if outside the country or in person at the Malta Police Headquarters in Floriana. According to Conduct Certificate Ordinance,[71] Chapter 77 of the Laws of Malta,[72] a court order is required to issue a Conduct Certificate of someone other than the person which it refers to. Information contained in the Conduct certificate includes a declaration of whether the person is in good conduct or a declaration containing the convictions recorded against the person. In Malta there is provision under the Probation Act for conviction to be removed from the criminal record. Criminal records are kept for a maximum of 10 years.[73]
Free criminal records are all over the internet, but they are not created all equal. There are many sites that offer free information, including government and public offices and there are many sites too that offer fee-based checks. The general guideline is if time, convenience and professional quality is of the essence, go with the paid version. But before hopping onto any one of those, you may want to consider taking reference from some of the review sites. Their selections are generally accurate and well-substantiated. The rest is up to you.
In Broken Records, a report on the problems with background checks, the National Consumer Law Center reported that Samuel M. Jackson was allegedly denied employment based on a felony conviction. However, according to the background check, the felony occurred when Jackson was just four years old. In truth, the report misattributed the crime because his name was similar to the actual felon's. Such inaccuracies, according the report, are widespread with background check services because of an “industry-wide lack of accountability” and incentive to “cut corners” in how they collect and attribute information.   

On 13 September 2004, the National Register of Convictions of the Republic of Lithuania was established.[66] The Departmental Register of Suspected, Accused and Convicted Persons is a central repository of criminal record data and related information in Lithuania. It is administered by the IT and Communications Department of the Lithuanian Ministry of the Interior which was appointed as the processing body in charge of ensuring the proper functioning and data management of the Register.[43]
The information on this site reflects the circumstances of an arrest and the information available at that time. It has no connection to the findings of guilt or innocence or the acquittal or dismissal of a criminal charge. It does not reflect the final disposition of any criminal charges. For information about the final disposition of arrests go to www.leeclerk.org.
Arrests, prosecutions and the disposition of the case for persons arrested for Class B misdemeanor or greater violation of Texas criminal statutes, as well as Class C convictions or deferred adjudications that are reported to the Department. The statute identifies many of the actual data elements. In addition, although not required by statute, CCH has traditionally included limited supervision data reported to DPS by TDCJ.

With an international background check, the employer can get international criminal records, education, and employment verification. Depending on the information employers need, they may pay for one, two, or all three. Costs vary by service provider, but GoodHire’s pricing for international checks ranges from $14.99 to $59.99, depending on the country.


There are many sites claiming to offer the best web-based background checks. At PeopleFinders, we offer one of the industry's most complete databases, filled with public records for almost every U.S. adult. We also have decades of experience to back it up. It couldn't be easier to start your online background check with us today. Keep reading below to see more about what our background database includes:
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