Answer

What kinds of criminal records show up on a background check?

Depending on the scope of the search allowable by law or requested by an employer, records of convictions of a felony or misdemeanor are usually reported on a background check. Non-convictions may be reported in some cases depending on the date of the charge or whether a case has been dismissed. Federal and state law will determine how far back criminal records can be reported.

A felony is typically defined as a crime punishable by a term of imprisonment of not less than one year or by the death penalty. Felonies may include crimes such as arson, assault, battery, fraud, homicide, kidnapping, rape, robbery, sex crimes, and terrorism.

Misdemeanors are often less serious crimes and are generally punishable by less than 12 months in jail. Community service, probation, fines, and imprisonment for less than a year are commonly issued punishments for misdemeanors. Obviously, each state may vary as to what is classified as a misdemeanor or felony.

Background checks often include a criminal history search at a minimum. However, depending upon the nature of the job, for persons in more sensitive, high-level positions or those dealing with vulnerable populations, it may also include investigation of credit reports, sanctions checks, sex offender checks, and/or driving history.

Background checks also may include verification of previous employment, education, professional licenses, and personal or professional references.

Pre-employment background checks are the most common. As an employer, you want to ensure a safe hire every time to protect your company’s reputation and workplace safety. Employees are often screened during the hiring process with a background check according to the company’s policy. Depending on the employer and the industry, background checks can vary greatly.

Yes, driving records can be included in a background check. This product verifies current driving history from the Department of Motor Vehicles; it may report arrests/convictions/suspensions for speeding and driving while intoxicated, which may indicate a history of reckless behavior.