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Delving Into Criminal Records: What You Need To Know About Background Checks

What Criminal Records are Typically Included in a Criminal Background Check?

In today's world, conducting a criminal background check has become very common and mandatory in various situations like employment, tenancy, and other background screenings. If an individual has a criminal record, it can limit their opportunities and decrease their chances of getting the job they want or renting an apartment. Therefore, it's important to have an understanding of what criminal records are included in a criminal background check.

A criminal background check typically includes information about a person's criminal history, including arrests, convictions, and any other criminal records. However, the extent of the information that can be found depends on the type of background check conducted. In general, there are three types of criminal background checks: county, state, and national.

County Level Criminal Record Checks

A county-level criminal record check is the most common of the three types of background checks. This type of check is conducted by accessing the records of the county where the person resides or has lived in the past.

Typically, a county-level criminal background check includes information such as arrest records and criminal convictions, misdemeanors, and felonies. The information is gathered from the county courthouse and jail records, and it includes the date and charges of the arrest and the disposition of the cases.

The county-level check is useful because it provides recent and accurate information, and it helps discover crimes committed at the local level that may not be included in other databases.

State Level Criminal Record Checks

A state-level criminal record check is the second type of background check and is conducted by accessing the records of various agencies in the state where the person resides.

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This check often includes details about previous criminal records, such as arrests and convictions, misdemeanors, and felonies, as well as parole or probation history. However, the extent of the information that can be found depends on the state's laws.

Some states may provide limited information about criminal records, while others may provide more comprehensive information. In general, state-level background checks are more thorough than county-level checks, but they are also more expensive and time-consuming.

National Level Criminal Record Checks

A National criminal record check is the most extensive background check and it gathers information from various sources, including county, state, and federal agencies.

This type of search may also include additional information, like civil, federal, and sex offender records, as well as driving records, credit history, and employment verification.

However, the information provided may not always be up to date and accurate, and some criminal records may not be included in the databases.

What criminal records are included in a background check also depends on the type of crime. Some crimes are considered more serious than others and can have a significant impact on a person's employment and housing prospects.

For instance, violent crimes like murder, rape, and assault are considered serious crimes while minor offenses like traffic tickets, public intoxication, and disorderly conduct may have less impact.

Different states also have varying laws on what criminal records can be used for background checks, especially for lesser charges. For instance, some states have "ban the box" laws, which prohibits employers and landlords from asking about a person's criminal history during initial screenings.

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Conclusion

In conclusion, conducting a criminal background check has become imperative in many situations, including employment, tenancy, and other background screenings. There are three types of criminal background checks, including county, state, and national. The extent of the information that can be found depends on the type of background check conducted.

The information gathered includes details about previous criminal records, such as arrests and convictions, misdemeanors, and felonies, as well as parole or probation history. What criminal records are included in a background check depends on the type of crime, and different states have varying laws on what criminal records can be used.

Overall, being aware of what criminal records are included in a criminal background check is important for anyone seeking employment and rental accommodation. Knowing the information that could be discovered during a check can help prepare individuals for any complications and assist them in building a strong case.

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