background check for criminal history

The 5 Types of Criminal Record Searches

Are you currently running the best criminal record searches for your organization? What about the government-mandated requirements for your industry? Before you can answer these questions, you need to understand the different types of criminal record searches.

1. County

  • County Criminal Search for current county of residence – Search for reportable felony and misdemeanor records within the applicant’s current county of residence.
  • County Criminal Search for up to two previous counties of residence – Criminal search history can be conducted in up to two additional counties where the person has lived in the last seven years.
  • County Criminal Search for all counties resided/worked/educated in for the past seven years – This is a very in-depth background check.

2. State

State criminal record searches involve looking through repositories of criminal information reported from counties throughout the state. Information collected varies from state to state and the availability of a statewide criminal search does not exist in all states.

3. National (TrueCrim)

The criminal records are sent to the courthouse following arraignment. Courthouses are required by law to file criminal This database of more than 600 million criminal records is an exclusive product that instantly searches the largest repositories of criminal records for the entire country. It includes the OFAC Global Terrorist Search, homeland security databases and more than 130 million individual county, state and national criminal records, and sex offender registry for all states. True Hire recommends this product in conjunction with the more detailed county-level searches.

national criminal search is not the same as federal criminal search
It is a common misconception that a National Criminal Search is the same as a Federal Criminal Search, however, this is not the case. The two types of searches are completely unrelated and involve entirely different criminal records.

4. Federal

A federal criminal background check will show if an applicant has had any criminal cases filed against them in violation of federal criminal law. It is a search of a specific federal district court records. Federal cases include crimes involving federal law, crimes that cross state lines and crimes that are committed on federal property.

5. International Watch List

The trial is concluded when a verdict/disposition is reached; this is referred to as the disposition date. The disposition is This type of search cross-references your applicant’s name against over 45 worldwide databases of known terrorists, fugitives, individuals, organizations, and companies considered to be a threat to global or national security. This service ensures USA Patriot Act compliance. True Hire can also conduct international criminal searches.

The True Hire Advantage

Now that you have a better understanding of the different types of criminal record searches, speak with one of our friendly experts today to determine which criminal record searches are the best for your organization. Give us a call at 800.262.7301 or email us.

Here’s how True Hire provides accurate criminal record searches, so that your organization receives the most thorough and trustworthy criminal history information possible.

  • True Hire ensures there are at least 3 applicant identifiers on reportable criminal cases, such as full name including middle name, date of birth, social security number, driver license number, and current/previous addresses.
  • Our criminal research team personally reaches out to the court clerks for any questionable information or identifiers needed.
  • True Hire strives to maintain the fastest turnaround times in the industry.
  • We stress the importance of running a TrueCrim search (national database search), then narrowing down by county to locate all criminal records on an applicant.
  • Finally, our criminal research experts go through pages of docket and sentencing information and then simplify the criminal record to make it easier for the client to read and understand.


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