How do you find a criminal record

Criminal Record Check Services

In some states, there are limits on what kind of criminal record information employers can access or request.

Background Checks and Criminal Records

Beyond employers, the people who can obtain a copy of your criminal record can vary greatly from state to state. In other states, less serious convictions may not be easily accessed.

Criminal Records

Private companies also sell criminal records online, to anyone willing to pay a fee, although these records are not necessarily complete, because they include only information that is publicly available. If your criminal record contains any inaccurate information that is detrimental to you, you need to ask the state to correct it. If you are currently facing charges, your defense attorney can help you do this. For example, a misdemeanor conviction may be listed as a felony, or the criminal conviction of someone else with the same name may be included in your record.

All states and the federal government also maintain sex offender registries. Sex offender registries are generally public and often available online although sometimes information is only available for offenders who are considered to be particularly dangerous. If you have previously been convicted of a crime, but have stayed out of trouble, you may be able to seal or expunge destroy your record. Generally, expunged convictions will not be included in a criminal record.


While sealing and expunging does not necessarily clear your record for any and all purposes for example, a law enforcement agency may still be able to access these records , it may allow you to truthfully state that you have not been convicted of a crime if asked by an employer or landlord. Generally, it is much more difficult, or impossible, to seal or expunge records for serious criminal convictions. A criminal record can make it hard to obtain work, rent an apartment, or qualify for a professional license.

If your criminal record is inaccurate, or if you believe that your record should be expunged, you may want to talk to a local criminal defense attorney.

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An attorney can tell you what steps to take in order to correct or expunge your record. The information provided on this site is not legal advice, does not constitute a lawyer referral service, and no attorney-client or confidential relationship is or will be formed by use of the site.

The attorney listings on this site are paid attorney advertising. In some states, the information on this website may be considered a lawyer referral service. Please reference the Terms of Use and the Supplemental Terms for specific information related to your state.

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Home Criminal Law Legal Rights. Getting a Copy of Your Criminal Record.

Criminal Records |

You have a right to see your criminal record, which includes convictions and, in some states, arrests too. What Is Included? Obtaining A Copy There are few different ways to obtain a copy of your criminal record. As a general rule, your criminal record may be checked: when you apply for a job or to school if you want to enter into the military for certain types of gun sales for security clearance if you want to foster or adopt a child for immigration, naturalization, or international travel for certain types of professional or business licenses when you register to vote, and anytime you submit to a background check, such as when you sign a lease.

For example, attorneys who apply to the state bar are subject to criminal records checks.

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Search Search. Home About. Programs See All Programs. Public Records Californians have the right under the state Public Records Act and the California Constitution to access public information maintained by local and state government agencies, including the Department of Justice.

A limited day extension may apply. If records cannot be provided within these deadlines, we will provide an estimated delivery date, and the records will be disclosed in a reasonable period of time. When the DOJ must compile or extract electronic data or perform computer programming, it may charge its full costs.

Criminal Record Check

A criminal record, police record, and colloquially rap sheet is a record of a person's criminal history. The information included in a criminal record and the. A criminal record, also known as a “rap sheet,” is a record of a person's criminal history related to both felony and misdemeanor charges or convictions.