Background Check in the US: How Do they Work?
These days the protection of privacy and the breach of privacy are two hot topics that often pop up on media and different outlets; on the one hand, we easily share our personal information and photos on social media websites, and on the other hand, we expect our privacy to be kept. So, where should the privacy line be drawn? What should we expect in a day and age where we are bombarded with information 24/7?
Certain laws, like the Freedom of Information Act, have drawn such lines and defined that the public should have access to information that relates to safety. As a result, certain personal information becomes a matter of public records, which allows people to protect themselves when necessary. When public records are accessible in background checks, they help discover valuable information about people, and this is what you need to know about background checks and how they work.
Employee Background Check in the US
Today, nearly one in every three Americans has a criminal record. As a result, employers are compelled to perform employee background checks on prospective employees. The purpose of such checks is to discover if people who apply for jobs have a criminal record, if they provided their real name, and if they told the truth about their education and previous work experience.
To perform an employee background check, employers have to get the consent of the people who will undergo this check. Before the check, job candidates will need to fill out a consent form with their name and personal information. Once the consent form is filled out, it is usually sent to a third-party company that specializes in background checks.
The company will perform the necessary checks and provide employers with a full background check report about the people in question. Under US law, employers are not allowed to disqualify candidates who have a criminal record. However, they are required to find out if employees have a criminal record as a matter of safety.
Other Types of Background Checks
Employee background checks are not the only background checks available these days. As a matter of public safety, you too can perform a background check on the people you know. How do these checks work? You can choose one of two ways to perform a background check:
Contact authorities that maintain public records – there are official authorities that maintain public records and dispense them upon request. To get copies of official public records, you will need to find out which authorities maintain them in the state where the search is performed. Each state and even each district have a main respiratory for each type of public record, and you can contact them to search for public records.
In most cases, you will need to contact the following to get copies of public records: court, police agencies, and health department. Once you find out which respiratory you need to contact, you will need to request the files you are searching in the methods available by the respiratory; via fax, email, postal services, via phone, or in person. After you file the request, you have to pay the fees for the public records search. The fee for this type of search differs from one agency to the next, so you need to find out how much you will have to pay for the search. The standard waiting period for background checks in between three days and no longer than four weeks, and you will be able to find out how your request is being processed and when it will be ready.
Background check directory – the process of contacting authorities to get copies of public records is pretty lengthy, but you can take a shorter route to get the answers you are looking for. To perform a quick background check, you can log in to GoLookUp.com. After the login, you need to enter the full name of the person you are searching and their state of residence, and that is it. Once GoLookUp has the person's info, it will scan public records and provide you with a report that includes birth records, criminal records, sex offenses, arrest records, mugshots, marriage records, divorce records, contact information, social media information, and much more.
Why Not Use a Free Background Check Service?
There is a third option for performing background checks, but it is the least recommended of the three. Why? Because a free background check is not guaranteed to give you all the information you need. Free public records search websites have very limited resources because they do not charge membership fees. To access all the public records in the country, websites have to pay. When a site does not charge any fees, it does not have the means to tap into all the public records in the US. As a result, you will get partial reports at best, and you will not be able to find all the information you are searching for the people in your life.
Also, free websites do not have a safety net; paid-per background check sites protect their users with advanced security systems – systems that free websites simply do not have. Free websites also lack a customer support service, so if you have trouble with the service, you will not be able to ask anyone for assistance.
A background check gives you a look into a person's past and present so you can protect yourself from those you may cause you harm. Access to personal records makes them public and not private, but there is a good reason for that; by discovering accurate information about people's past, you will be able to find out if certain people in your life are lying to you. In those cases, the public records data and information gives you the power to protect yourself and your loved ones, and also make well-informed decisions.