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4 Critical Records Showing in a Criminal Background Check

Picture this —you’ve found the perfect candidate who aced multiple interviews. But hold your horses before you decide on hiring them! Wait for the criminal background check report first. What will it uncover, and how can you safeguard your company from the wrong hire?

Background checks play a crucial role in a company’s hiring process. They provide insights into a potential employee’s honesty and suitability for the position, focusing on qualifications and experience. 

These checks typically include criminal history, employment and education verification, identity, and driving records and may involve credit, social media, and drug testing, ensuring a comprehensive assessment of candidates.

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Purpose of Background Checks 

The requirements for criminal background checks for employment can vary by company, but typically, they will ask for the full name, Social Security number, and date of birth. They will also need the candidate’s permission for the employer to access credit reports, school records, and military service details.

Additionally, they may request information like the driver’s license number, educational history (schools attended, degrees earned, dates of completion), work history, and, if relevant, documents like ID cards and passport information. 

Depending on the position, they may also request to conduct the background check for other specific criteria.

Getting Ready for a Background Check

Anticipating a criminal record background check may be unnerving, but safeguards are in place for the candidate’s protection. Before initiating a background check, whether by a prospective employer or staffing agency, they must obtain written authorization first.  Without this consent, the employer or staffing agency could breach the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), which upholds consumer rights.

What May Come Up on a Criminal Background Investigation

During a pre-employment screening, a prospective employer may look for details like education, work history, licenses, civil court checks, and drug tests. These checks can all be part of a “standard background check,” but it varies by the employer.

It’s essential to note that criminal background checks concentrate on felony and misdemeanor convictions and do not include the information mentioned above.  Here are specific details that may surface in a criminal record search.

1. Felonies  

A criminal history check covers information related to charges, trials, or convictions for crimes. Its primary purpose is to determine whether a candidate has been found guilty of misdemeanor or felony offenses, as convictions are concrete evidence of wrongdoings.

These checks may also encompass pending charges or arrests. However, employers are generally advised to give less weight to these findings than to convictions, as pending cases lack a verdict and sentence proving guilt.

It’s essential to note that some states have criminal history background check laws limiting or prohibiting employers from considering arrest records in the hiring process. 

Due to variations in state laws concerning arrest records, we exclude information on arrests that didn’t result in convictions from our criminal history checks. It helps our clients avoid unintentionally violating state regulations.

A criminal conviction expunged or sealed should not appear on a criminal background check. In recent years, countless criminal justice reform advocates have worked to make expungement more accessible. 

2. Sex Offender Registry Result

Sex offender registry searches encompass a wide range of jurisdictions, spanning over 200 different registries, which include more than 150 states, territories, and Indian Nations. If you limit your background criminal check and search to just your company’s or the applicant’s state, you might miss information about their sex offender registration in another state.

When you request a sex offender registry search, any convictions related to a sex offense may be visible on the individual’s criminal history report.  For instance, if you request a sex offender registry search along with a county-level criminal history report, the sex offense is typically included in the criminal history information, provided it complies with local, state, and federal laws.

It’s important to note that some states establish restrictions on criminal record background check reporting. As such, criminal convictions from the past seven years, while others allow reporting regardless of the conviction’s age.  Older offenses may not be displayed in the criminal history section if your company operates in a state with reporting restrictions.

3. Misdemeanors 

Misdemeanors, while less severe than felonies, are still criminal offenses that can lead to substantial fines or brief jail sentences. They are typically permanent and reportable, following federal and state laws in a background check. Some common examples include drunk driving, drug possession, and vandalism.

Many employers may not be overly concerned with misdemeanors, primarily if they occurred long ago. In this case, they don’t include it in the criminal background checks for employment. However, like felonies, the impact depends on the nature of the specific crime.  For instance, someone applying for a job as a delivery driver is unlikely to be hired if they have multiple past convictions for drunk driving on their record.

4. Traffic Violations 

Traffic violations sometimes appear on a background check. The report may not include minor infractions like speeding or running a stop sign, and even if they are, many employers won’t consider them significant, depending on the job. 

However, reports of more serious offenses like drag racing or reckless driving, particularly if they lead to felony or misdemeanor charges, are more likely to concern potential employers. Hence, including it in the criminal history background check becomes necessary.

Hire Credible Employees With ADC 

The quest for an honest, responsible, dependable employee can be challenging. However, ADC simplifies the process. By using our pre-employment screening services, you can make quicker and well-informed hiring choices. 

Within minutes, you’ll receive crucial information, including criminal reports, credit histories, and identity verification, to aid your hiring decisions. Choose ADC for a smoother, more informed hiring process.  You won’t have to worry about getting the best and most credible talents onboard with us. We uphold the gold standard in any background verification and criminal background check. 

Book a free consultation with us today!