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Hiring? How Long Does a Criminal Record Background Check Take?

If you’re an employer getting ready to hire your next employee, you probably want to conduct a background check on them. There are all sorts of background checks that uncover different information. But one of the most important for hiring purposes is the criminal background check. You want to make sure the person you’re about to hire doesn’t have a criminal history or any pending criminal cases. 

How long does a criminal background check take, and what’s included in this type of check? Learn more here. 

What Does a Criminal Record Background Check Uncover?

As the name implies, a criminal record check searches for criminal violations in a candidate’s past. A basic criminal check consists of a Social Security number trace to verify a person’s identity, a national criminal database search, and a sex offender registry search. Criminal background checks may also search domestic and global terrorist watchlists, plus federal, national, state, and county criminal records as well. This way, the employer can see any violations from a candidate’s past, as well as pending charges in many cases, to help inform the hiring decision. 

How Long Does This Type of Check Take?

Some criminal record background checks are almost instant, with results from the Social Security trace and sex offender registry coming back in a matter of moments. Depending on additional information sought, the search could take longer. When the search includes criminal records on the federal, state, or county levels, the search will probably take a few days depending on the exact circumstances. And if a court system does not have digitized records – not common, but possible – your screening provider might need to send someone to physically review the records. Obviously, this will make the process take longer. 

Do I Need to Run Criminal Record Checks When Hiring?

In almost every case, yes, it’s a good idea to run criminal record background checks when hiring for your open positions. You want to know about the background of the people you’re hiring, especially if they’ll be handling sensitive company information or dealing with the public. To make the smart choice, partner with an accredited background check provider like Metrodata Services. 

Solving Your Background Check Challenges 

As Western New York’s leading pre-employment screening provider, Metrodata Services is accredited by the Professional Background Screening Association (PBSA) to ensure your background check needs are met, every time. Contact us today to get started. 

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