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Addressing the Top Questions About Criminal Records Checks

by Info One2verify - Published on 4/19/2024 11:37 AM

During the hiring process of new employees or contractors, running background checks proves important for your organization. Thus, comprehensive criminal record checks have become an important part of the hiring process across industries. However, there are many nuances to direct in order to incorporate these background screenings compliantly. Here are answers to some of the top questions about criminal record checks:

What's Covered in a Criminal Check?

A thorough criminal record search looks far beyond just convictions for felonies. It should also review misbehaviors, pending charges, and sometimes non-conviction records like dismissals or acquittals. The entire scope covers offenses like sexual crimes, fraud, theft, drug violations, and more. Gaining visibility into a candidate's full record is essential for assessing potential risks.

How Far Back Do Checks Extend?

There is no defined time limit for how far back into someone's history a criminal background check will explore. Convictions, especially for severe offenses, can remain on a record indefinitely in most jurisdictions. Some states do have laws restricting reporting of older charges after a legal "clean period", so understanding the screening firm's processes is important.

To learn more about this, please read our previous article:

How Far Back Does a Criminal Background Check Go?

Are All Records Included?

A background check can only partially capture every single record due to constantly evolving data sources, sealed cases, and other factors. That's why using a screening provider with strong multi-jurisdictional data access spanning counties, states/provinces, and national sources is critical. The more sources searched, the more comprehensive the results.

What Are the Consent Requirements?

With very few exceptions, employers must obtain clear written consent and authorization from each candidate before conducting any pre-employment background screening, including criminal records. Legal privacy protections are in place, so a consistent, documented consent process is necessary

How Long Does It Take to Get Results from a Criminal Records Check?

The turnaround time for a criminal records check can vary depending on factors such as the scope of the search and the service provider's efficiency. However, One2verify's streamlined process often makes results available quickly, enabling prompt decision-making.

When is the Right Time to Screen Candidates?

For most roles, it's advisable to hold off on initiating criminal background checks until you've identified standout candidates later in the hiring process. This helps avoid potential compliance pitfalls around discriminatory rejection based on records early on. However, earlier screening may be necessary for security-sensitive roles like handling financials or working with susceptible groups.

Is Re-Screening Current Employees Necessary?

For employees in sensitive positions with elevated responsibilities around areas like finance, data security, or working with minors, it's generally advisable to periodically re-screen their criminal records on an annual or bi-annual basis at a minimum. This enables you to identify any new charges or convictions that arise during their employment so you can take appropriate steps.

How Should Findings Be Evaluated?

Having a criminal record should not be an automatic disqualification for employment. Employers must take an individualized approach, evaluating factors like the type of offense, how long ago it occurred, whether it directly impacts job duties, the demonstrated evidence of rehabilitation, and if it creates a clear safety risk when making final determinations.

How Can I Ensure Accurate Results?

One2Verify is a leading provider of meticulous, comprehensive criminal record checks and employment background screening solutions. Our strict procedures, quality assurance processes, and direct data source access deliver the timely, reliable results organizations need to make fully informed hiring decisions with confidence.

Don't leave your workplace security up to chance. Partner with One2Verify for the professional-grade criminal background checks and screening services you need to build a safe, qualified team. Contact us today to know more.

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