How to Order a Criminal Background Check on Yourself


If you are interested in obtaining your criminal record to see what it says about yourself, getting one is fairly easy. Landlords and potential employers order criminal backgrounds all the time to screen the history of potential renters and employees. You can order a background check of yourself online or in person.

State Jurisdictions And Local Records

If you want to order a criminal background check on yourself, some of the best places to check are your local police department or the Department of Justice in your state. Each state in the country stores information regarding criminals. They will usually make a hard copy as well as a digital database.

Each state has a different way that they handle background checks. You’ll need to check to see if you must visit the local courthouse, police station in your city or county or the Department of Justice. Fortunately, some states make it easy by offering an online ordering option.

Requesting And Completing An Application

After you have determined where your records are kept, you’ll be required to request an application. Typically, these applications will ask you for the following information:

– Your name
– Your address
– Social Security number
– Driver’s license number

You’ll usually have to pay a fee to request your report. In addition, you may need to identify yourself. In some states, you may even need to be fingerprinted. After you submit your application form, it will take a few weeks for you to receive any criminal records that you may have.

Searching For FBI Records

If you decide to request records from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), you will be required to fill out an Applicant Information Form. This form is used by the FBI to request information about yourself or other individuals. It will ask for identifying information such as a name, address, birth date, Social Security number and contact information that is current.

The application from the FBI does require fingerprints. It can be completed at the closest FBI building in your vicinity. The cost for a background check from the FBI is $18, and it typically takes 4 to 6 weeks before you will receive your records.

Using A Third Party To Search

If you don’t have the time to search for your records, you may want to hire a company that does this type of work or a private investigator. Of course, this method will cost you more than doing it yourself, but it will alleviate the hassle of going to separate courthouses.

Reviewing Your Past Record

After obtaining your complete criminal record, it’s important that you review it to make sure that it is accurate. Also, you may want to talk to an attorney about sealing your records or expungement. If you’ve got some bad marks on your criminal history, it may pay off to see if you can have that information removed.