Can You Get Personal Information about People for Free?

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Obviously, if a company is to hire a new employee, it makes sense for them to look into those they want to offer the job to. An employee is a representative of the business and they have to be trusted, or they will destroy the reputation of the business as a whole. This is why you may want to consider a free background check, looking into whether or not someone has a criminal history.

Can You Get a Free Criminal History Check?

Because the online world has made virtually all information readily available, a lot of people think that they can easily perform a criminal background check for free online. The reality is, however, that this information is unlikely to be reliable, if you find anything at all. The problem is that, if you find any data, it is not likely to be accurate. There are exceptions. Criminal convictions are a matter of public record, which means the courts and the police have them. However, this means that they can only give you information for that particular court, and that particular police department, rather than a national view.

Luckily, there are other options out there as well. A number of private firms now exist that have started to collate records on individuals. These records includes birth, death, and marriage records, inmate information, arrest records, sex offenders records, sentencing files, civil records, court records, cellphone and location information, bankruptcy records, and so on. What this means is that there is mountains of information out there, making it a lot easier to complete a background check. You do, however, have to sign up to these services, which generally involves a fee.

How Fees Work

Different organizations have different options for their fees. However, usually, there are two solutions available:

  1. A single fee that allows you to look up the details of a single individual.
  2. A membership fee that allows you to look up the details of multiple individuals. Usually, they will offer different price plans, with the more expensive the plan is, the more people you can look up each month, or year.

However, you do have to make sure that you know exactly what you are paying for. Firstly, you have to check whether the source is reputable. If the company has only just started, then they may not have many details at all yet, and effectively only use what they can find online. If the company is a reputable one, you still have to look into what it is they actually offer. For instance, you need to look into how far back the records go.

Do You Really Need a Criminal Background Check?

Because the reality is that it is sometimes quite costly to complete a background check, particularly for small businesses, some decide to trust their employees instead. While this is absolutely your right, there are situations in which a check is mandatory. For instance, if the employee would work with children or vulnerable adults, then you must check their history.