When someone applies for a job with your company, one of the most important steps in vetting out the individual is to check their criminal backgrounds before hiring them. Today you can easily find out if potential new hires have a criminal history by scanning state and federal criminal court and databases online. When conducting a criminal background check you want to:
- Verify the person’s name, date of birth, and if possible, social security number to ensure an accurate criminal records search.
- Inform potential new employees of the criminal background check you are conducting on them.
- Use reliable sources such as police records and court documents when doing a nationwide criminal records search.
Use state and federal prisoner databases for a criminal record searchChances are that anyone who has been convicted of a felony has been sentenced to prison or some form of probation. Most records of a person's prison sentence are available online.
inmate locator to find out if an individual has ever served time for a crime since 1982. However, it is important to enter the correct first and last name to conduct a proper search. State correctional facilities also offer a similar service, but in some cases, you can conduct a search using a person's date of birth or social security number. Family Watchdog tracks registered sex offenders after releases from prison.
Utilize criminal background vendorsThere are numerous online services offering criminal records searches and criminal background checks for a nominal fee.
Search federal and state court websites for a criminal historyIn the event a potential employee has been arrested but never convicted of a crime, you will have to check for criminal cases in federal and state courts to obtain copies of their case disposition.
Pacer, a web-based service provided by the U.S. district courts that contains case information on individuals arrested on federal crimes. Pacer allows users to view and download arrest affidavits, indictments and other criminal records. Most state courts have similar capabilities.
- Criminal backgrounds can be difficult to track, especially if a person moves around a lot. To help identify all the states a person may have lived in, conduct a credit check on the person. Their credit history will help you to identify past addresses and aliases, which you can then use to search criminal databases for information.