Background Check 101: Everything You Need To Know

Run A Background Check


1. What Is A Background Check?

A background check is when someone looks up and gathers information about another person. This information is usually compiled through an online service, public directory, or by an agency.


2. What Do Background Checks Show?

Much information can be shown on a background check. Depending on where and how you run the check, the information gathered may vary.

A background check may include:

  • Phone Number
  • Social Media Profiles
  • Work and Educational History
  • Past and Current Addresses
  • Financial and Criminal History
  • Properties Owned
  • Siblings and Family Members
  • Age
  • And More!


3. What Are The Different Types Of Background Checks?

There are many different types of background checks to choose from. Below, we’ve listed the ones most commonly done.

  • Criminal Background Check

When running a Criminal Background Check, criminal databases, state and federal criminal records, sex offender registries, and criminal court records are searched. This type of background check is often done to vet potential employees or tenants.

  • Employment Background Check

Before a company hires someone, they typically run an Employment Background Check. This is done to make sure the candidate’s credentials are correct and that they don’t use drugs or have a criminal past. The company must have the candidate’s full name, current address, Social Security number, and their permission in order to run a check on them.   

  • Universal Background Check

When someone is looking to purchase a firearm from a dealer or manufacturer, a Universal Background Check must be done on the person. The sellers are required to use the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) to search the potential buyer. A person will not pass if they have a criminal past, are an illegal alien, or have certain mental illnesses.

  • Fingerprint Background Check

A Fingerprint Background Check is often done along with an employment or criminal background search. Certain jobs require this, such as those for airports, law enforcement, schools, and so on.

  • Credit Background Check

This check is often referred to as a Credit Report. Landlords often run them on potential tenants to make sure they can pay their rent on time. This report details a person’s bill payment and credit history.

  • Personal Background Check  

This background check type is pretty self-explanatory. It’s when you conduct a search on yourself to see what information employers might see about you. Your work, financial, and criminal history is just some of what could be included.


4. Why Do People Run Background Checks?

There are many motives as to why someone would run a background search on another. Here are the most typical reasons why:

  • An employer vetting potential employees.
  • A parent checking out a babysitter’s or tutor’s credentials.
  • Wanting to see what shows up on your own background search.
  • Making sure your potential tenants are likely to pay their rent.
  • Ensuring that someone qualifies to purchase a firearm.


5. How Long Does It Take For A Background Check To Come Back?

Well, the amount of time it takes to get a background search depends on a number of factors such as:

  • The age of the person being searched.
  • The method used to run the background check.
  • The type of background check(s) being run.
  • The amount of information being searched for.

In general, a background search should take about 2-3 days to come back. Specifically for Federal Background Checks, they usually take about a month. If you’re looking to get information fast, online services can provide you with information within minutes!


6. How Far Back Does A Background Check Go?

There isn’t an exact number of years every background check can go. For example, an Employment Background Check goes back 7 years, but can also go back 10 years depending on the State.  


7. Where Can I Run A Background Check?

If you’re looking to run a background check yourself, the easiest and most convenient way is through an online service and public directory database like Kiwi Searches. You just enter the name of the person into a search bar, and the service does the work for you. Plus, these sites are inexpensive, with the first search typically being less than a dollar!


This was our Background Check 101 guide! Hopefully, you found it useful and informative in learning more about running a search on someone.

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