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How To Look Up Someone's Criminal Record: Step-by-Step Guide

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How To Look Up Someone's Criminal Record: Step-by-Step Guide

Discover how to look up someone's criminal record with our comprehensive step-by-step guide. Access valuable information now and make informed decisions.

Look Up Someone's Criminal Record
Look Up Someone's Criminal Record

Learning how to look up someone's criminal record for free allows you to avoid inviting hazardous, dishonest, and negligent individuals into your life, ensuring a more secure and trustworthy environment.

Performing a criminal background evaluation, such as learning how to look up someone's criminal record for free, offers you extensive information about an individual. This aids you in deciding whether you want to devote more time to getting to know them better.

Fortunately, obtaining a person's criminal history has become effortless thanks to record verification services. BeenVerified , PeopleLooker, and TruthFinder rank among the top websites for swiftly and effortlessly accessing someone's criminal background from the convenience of your residence.

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What is a Criminal Records Check?

Looking up someone's criminal record requires a thorough analysis of all the information related to that person, which can be found in state and federal public records. 

To learn how to look up someone's criminal record and collect additional data, you can use any identifying details such as their name, phone number, or email address while searching through public records.

In a criminal records search , the data you may encounter encompasses personal details, and educational background, potential family members and connections, past addresses, criminal history, 

legal documents, sex offender specifics, social media accounts, and real estate information, among other things.

A typical criminal history document might contain:

  • Permits for weapons 
  • Professional licenses
  • History of Education
  • Civil court documents
  • Records of offenses and arrests
  • Aliases
  • Monetary assets
  • Bankruptcies
  • Liens
  • Social media accounts
  • Photographs
  • Detailed name
  • Date of birth and age

Bear in mind that when learning how to look up someone's criminal record, only background check services with FCRA approval should be used for screening purposes. Utilizing services that fail to adhere to FCRA regulations for background checks is against the law.

did you know
did you know

What Shows Up if You Look Up Someone’s Criminal Record?

A background examination of one's criminal past may reveal details about offenses the individual has faced charges, trials, or convictions for. In the majority of instances, the main objective of such assessments is to determine if the person in question has any misdemeanor or felony convictions. 

Furthermore, when learning how to look up someone's criminal record for free, these assessments generally encompass not only ongoing criminal allegations but also apprehensions.

Specific details that will be included on criminal record check reports include

  • The punishment, which may involve jail time or fines
  • The defendant, or the person's name who is accused of a crime
  • The manner of filing, including the case numbers assigned to the charges and other pertinent information about the court case
  • The judgment or result of the charge
  • The outcome of the case or any information on a settlement
  • The offense, or the crime, with which the defendant was charged, including the level of the offense (misdemeanor vs. felony).

When figuring out how to look up someone's criminal record for free, it’s essential to remember that the examination should never disclose a criminal conviction that has been expunged or sealed.

Advocates for criminal justice reform have made efforts in recent years to eliminate some obstacles to expungement, especially as the legalization of marijuana across the country has left numerous former offenders with convictions for acts that are no longer considered criminal. 

If an individual has effectively requested the court to seal or expunge their records, that data should not be present on their criminal record report. The regulations for expungement differ somewhat among states.

State regulations differ when it comes to the extent of criminal history checks.

In certain states—such as California, Kansas, Massachusetts, Maryland, Montana, New Hampshire, New York, and Washington—background check sites are prohibited from revealing data on convictions older than seven years. 

Hawaii enforces an even stricter rule: a seven-year cap for felony convictions and a five-year limit for misdemeanors. Conversely, some states place no limitations on the extent of public criminal records searches during background investigations.

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Types of Criminal Record Checks

When learning how to look up someone's criminal record for free, you may discover a variety of documents in your investigation. Here is a summary of the most commonly found categories of criminal records:

Pending Charges: Discovering pending charges is usually difficult as they’re not generally considered public records. Nonetheless, if you can get a friend or relative to inquire on your behalf, they might be able to learn whether there are any pending charges involving the individual you're concerned about.

Conviction Records: Records of convictions are likewise accessible to the public, yet acquiring them may be more difficult compared to arrest records. 

Generally, the Department of Corrections in each state manages conviction records. To get copies of these records, reaching out to the respective state's DOC where the individual was found guilty is necessary.

Arrest Records: In general, arrest records are considered public information and can be accessed via numerous online and offline channels. By knowing the location of the individual's arrest, one can typically obtain the arrest record from the court clerk within the corresponding county.

Background Check: Conducting background investigations is an alternative method to discover criminal histories. Numerous businesses provide these solutions, and they generally examine all available public documents to uncover any past criminal activities related to the individual in question.


Why Look Up Someone’s Criminal Record?

Discovering how to look up someone's criminal record for free can prove advantageous for individuals and businesses alike. Here are four reasons to consider undertaking a criminal records investigation:

  • Examining the background of a person you're dating - Although it might be uncomfortable to consider, reviewing an individual's criminal history prior to becoming deeply involved can protect you from emotional distress.
  • In order to investigate a newcomer in your area - Conducting a background check for criminal records can be beneficial in learning about new individuals settling into your community and vicinity.
  • Evaluating potential business associates - Being aware of your business collaborator's criminal background can provide you with reassurance and assist in steering clear of any involvement with an individual whose integrity may be questionable.

Differences Between a Criminal Records Check and a Background Check

Numerous people tend to link the process of how to look up someone's criminal record for free with thorough assessments of an individual's criminal history. However, the scope of such a criminal records investigation is notably more limited.

This type of check solely reveals if the individual has a criminal conviction. It does not display any information about arrests or current charges the person might be facing.

On the other hand, learning how to look up someone's criminal record for free through a background check provides a more extensive range of details. This method not only uncovers whether a person has faced any criminal convictions but also divulges past arrests or unresolved charges they might possess.

Furthermore, it provides insights into the person's history, covering aspects like their work experience, educational background, and any past financial issues.

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Ways to Lookup Someone’s Criminal Record

There are various techniques available on how to look up someone's criminal record for free, with the most effective and straightforward method being an online record verification service. Here are some strategies for discovering criminal records: 

Discovering how to look up someone's criminal record can seem like an overwhelming task, as manually sifting through public records to find relevant information can be incredibly time-consuming. By leveraging an online criminal record lookup service, you'll significantly increase the likelihood of obtaining precise and accurate details about an individual.

The services utilize the identification details supplied by you to search across billions of government and criminal documents in their database to locate pertinent information. This data is then assembled into a comprehensible background check report that is simple to read and distribute to others.

After mastering the simplicity of how to find someone's criminal record using specialized record check services, let's dive deeper into the top three providers. We will briefly analyze each of these leading services to identify the unique factors that distinguish them from one another.

BeenVerified – Best Overall Criminal Record Check Service


BeenVerified is a popular internet-based record verification service that offers a feature on how to look up someone's criminal record. This function empowers you to discover how to find someone's criminal record for individuals living in the United States.

The feature allows you to effortlessly examine an individual's criminal history. By simply inputting the person's given and family name, along with their residing state, you can access their criminal records and gain valuable insights.

BeenVerified subsequently delivers an in-depth report containing data regarding any discovered criminal records, encompassing details on charges, convictions, and judicial documents.

PeopleLooker – Best for Fast Results


PeopleLooker is a prominent online public records search platform that specializes in providing essential information about individuals, including how to look up someone's criminal record. 

By utilizing the feature on how to find someone's criminal record, users can effortlessly uncover criminal records by merely inputting a person's name, address, or contact number. 

This streamlined process guarantees the maintenance of the original text's semantic meaning while improving its overall flow and readability.

The function utilizes information from national, regional, and local criminal records to offer users an extensive criminal background summary. This document may contain details like felony and misdemeanor verdicts, detentions, warrant issuances, and inclusion in the sex offender registry, among other data.

TruthFinder –  Best for Searching the Deep Web


TruthFinder stands out as one of the top choices when it comes to learning how to look up someone's criminal record. Boasting an incredibly user-friendly platform, you can seamlessly conduct a variety of searches using names, phone numbers, or email addresses to uncover criminal background information.

Boasting an extensive database of criminal public records, it can provide a significant quantity of precise information on a specific person. With TruthFinder's background verification services and its dark web surveillance feature, you can obtain data not available elsewhere online. 

The cost of TruthFinder, a top choice for discovering how to find someone's criminal record, is $28.05 per month . Opting for a two-month subscription raises the total to $46. Learn about its prominence as the preferred solution for criminal background checks by delving into our in-depth TruthFinder analysis.

Intelius – Best Criminal Record Check Service for Accuracy


In the realm of criminal background investigations, Intelius competes closely with BeenVerified when it comes to understanding how to look up someone's criminal record. This all-inclusive people search platform shines due to its remarkable accuracy. 

Boasting over 20 billion public records in its extensive database, Intelius offers a vast treasure trove of information on any individual.

Intelius provides a relatively cost-effective solution for those seeking how to find someone's criminal record with their monthly plan priced at $24.86 , while their 2-month plan is available for $42.25. 

Before opting for this service to conduct criminal background investigations, it's essential to go through our in-depth Intelius review to make an informed decision.

Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Database 

The FBI possesses an extensive collection of criminal records, which authorized organizations, such as law enforcement agencies, can access. 

To discover how to look up someone's criminal record within the FBI's database, a query must be directed to the FBI's Criminal Justice Information Services Division through a state or local law enforcement agency, or via an authorized FBI-endorsed channeler. 

This process ensures accurate search results and maintains the integrity of the information.

Although the FBI database is expected to be more precise and thorough compared to alternative sources, the procedure for conducting a search might be more complex and lengthy. Furthermore, it could involve a cost. 

Nevertheless, exploring the FBI database provides a comprehensive approach to how to find someone's criminal record, making it an essential resource for those seeking highly precise and detailed information about an individual's criminal history.

State-Level Criminal Record Searches

How to look up someone's criminal record within a specific state can be achieved through statewide criminal background checks. These checks act as an effective technique for collecting information on a person's past criminal activities in that particular state.

To discover how to find someone's criminal record, it’s essential to understand that each state maintains its own database of such records, which can be accessed by authorized entities such as law enforcement agencies. 

Typically, a statewide criminal background search necessitates submitting a request to the specific state agency in charge of overseeing these records. The process of how to find someone's criminal record may be time-consuming and might require the payment of a fee. 

However, conducting searches at the state level can produce more accurate and thorough results than using online criminal record search platforms, providing detailed and in-depth information.

It’s crucial to acknowledge, though, that the information gathered from state-level searches might not always be current or correct, and the procedure could potentially breach privacy regulations if not used cautiously. 

In spite of the limitations, learning how to look up someone's criminal record at the state level remains a valuable tool for those who desire comprehensive and accurate information regarding an individual's criminal history within a particular state.

How Long Does Finding Someone’s Criminal Record Check Take?

Learning how to look up someone's criminal record can be made easy by using a reliable records verification service like BeenVerified or PeopleLooker. These platforms are specifically crafted to deliver fast and straightforward criminal background check results within minutes. 

By using these services, you'll no longer need to endure the inconvenience of waiting for days to obtain the desired information.

Conversely, if you opt for learning how to look up someone's criminal record for free through manual methods or by utilizing a governmental or consumer reporting agency, the procedure might take significantly more time.

Although multiple background checks, including how to find someone's criminal record, can be performed and produce results within a three to five-day period, specific cases may necessitate a longer duration. For example, completing an FBI check generally takes around 30 days.

While some federal background investigations can be conducted more rapidly, it's advisable to prepare for an extensive examination necessitating a 30-day waiting period. An additional factor contributing to delays in record check processing is the number of states the individual has resided in. 

With more states comes an increase in the amount of databases to search, resulting in a longer time to gather the required information. This is the primary reason for record check delays. 

Furthermore, certain record checks necessitate multiple pieces of information (for instance, criminal history and credit assessments). The more inquiries included in a single record check, the more time-consuming the procedure may become.

How Much Does Looking Up Someone’s Criminal Record Check Cost?

The cost of conducting a background check, such as learning how to look up someone's criminal record, typically ranges from $10 to $500. This price depends on the components encompassed within the investigative report.

Background investigations centered on how to find someone's criminal record are typically more cost-effective compared to those that integrate education verifications, along with drug testing procedures.

In order to evaluate different service providers, it’s essential to weigh the aspects or inquiries within a report against the overall cost of the report.

When deciding on how to look up someone's criminal record, opting for a platform like BeenVerified is a great choice. To begin the criminal background investigation, users must first sign up for a membership in order to access comprehensive reports. 

The subscription rates are available at $28 per month or at a discounted rate of $23 per month for a two-month membership, which requires a one-time payment of $46.

Additionally, the company provides an option for members to enroll in a one-month reverse phone lookup subscription at a rate of $4.99 per month.

When the membership duration ends, it’s automatically renewed unless the member opts to cancel beforehand. It’s also crucial to mention that an extra $2 fee is required to download the BeenVerified record report in PDF format.

Factors to Consider When Looking Up Someone's Criminal Record

When trying to learn how to look up someone's criminal record, it’s crucial to consider different factors, such as

Accuracy of Information

When learning how to look up someone's criminal record for free, it's important to remember that the information may not be entirely accurate or all-encompassing. Errors can occur during data entry or other stages of record maintenance. 

Additionally, the records might not include specifics on dismissed or expunged charges, affecting the overall understanding of an individual's criminal history.

Privacy Laws

When considering how to look up someone's criminal record, it's essential to be aware of potential privacy concerns. In some cases, attempting to access a person's criminal history without their consent could be unlawful. 

Even when permitted, it's vital to exercise caution and respect the individual's privacy while obtaining such sensitive information.

Legal Uses of Criminal Records

Additionally, there are legal restrictions on the utilization of criminal records. For instance, it’s usually forbidden for companies to discriminate against people due to their criminal background, unless a clear connection exists between the job and criminal conduct.

How to Look Up Someone’s Criminal Records Check - Frequently Asked Questions

What Fails You on a Record Check?

Discovering how to find someone's criminal record can reveal a negative outcome in their background Check, often due to the presence of a prior conviction. Moreover, inconsistencies between the details provided and what the search uncovers can contribute to unsuccessful results.

Other factors that may contribute to an unsuccessful criminal records examination include unsatisfactory credit history, drug and alcohol test results, and problematic driving history.

How to Check My Criminal Record for Free?

Discover how to find someone's criminal record effortlessly with BeenVerified. Conduct a thorough personal record examination and gain access to your criminal history as others might perceive it. Unfortunately, there is no cost-free approach for reviewing your individual criminal background online.

To acquire personal record inspection details, you may need to submit an application to the appropriate official agencies by hand.

Bottom Line on How to Look Up Someone’s Criminal Records Check

If you're wondering how to look up someone's criminal record, whether it be for yourself, a family member, a past acquaintance, or to confirm the background of a potential partner, the aforementioned services can help you in acquiring accurate information seamlessly.

Navigating the process of how to look up someone's criminal record can be quite daunting, especially given the need to reach out to multiple government agencies and submit a public records request to each of them. 

Not only do you face fees for every application, but your responsibilities don't end there. You must also meticulously examine the received documents to locate the desired data. Effortlessly access the top record verification services. 

Discover how to find someone's criminal record with ease by simply conducting a search using the person of interest's name, phone number, email, or mailing address. 

The people lookup service will efficiently compile an in-depth criminal background check report for you, ensuring you receive accurate and comprehensive information.

Keep in mind that the availability of criminal records as public information serves the purpose of encouraging openness and responsibility. Nevertheless, this doesn't imply that these records should be used for intimidation or prejudice. 

When exploring how to find someone's criminal record, it’s essential to manage the information cautiously while maintaining the individual's confidentiality and upholding their dignity.

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Disclaimer: The above is a sponsored post, the views expressed are those of the sponsor/author and do not represent the stand and views of Outlook Editorial.


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