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How long does it take to complete a public records investigation?
When we receive a request to start a public records investigation, we immediately get the searches ordered. The key is how quickly the requested searches can be completed. The majority of searches can be completed within three to five business days but can take up to six weeks depending on court jurisdiction procedures. We do all we can to expedite the process.
How long does it take to complete the background referencing investigation?
When we receive a request to start a background reference investigation, we immediately mail to the candidate the appropriate materials to complete. The key is how quickly the candidate completes and returns these materials. Once we receive these materials, the background investigation generally takes four to eight weeks. We do all we can to expedite the process. The candidate and their references are provided with postage-paid return envelopes.
Who has access to the background investigation file and its contents?
The confidential background investigation file is physically kept in a secure storage facility here in Minnesota. The file and all of its contents are the sole property of the organization that requested the background investigation. No information is released to any other party (including the candidate) without the written permission of an authorized representative of the church or when mandated by law (legal subpoena) the information will be produced. The candidate acknowledges their understanding of this when he/she signs the Authorization/Release.
Can we make changes to the forms and/or questions asked?
Though the screening model illustrated here is consistent with what many in the religious community are utilizing, we recognize that the screening documents may need to be modified to better suit the needs of your organization. We would welcome the opportunity to do so.
Can you perform investigations on persons outside the United States?
Depending on where the candidate has lived, we can access some international criminal records by request only from the client. However, international background investigations typically take longer to complete and will incur additional fees. We are always able to conduct the background check process on your international candidates.
Will our insurance premiums be lower if we screen all church employees?
Any measures you take to significantly lower your risk should be reflected in your premium. Call your insurance agent/underwriter for a determination. We are aware that some insurance companies require background checks as a condition of providing sexual misconduct coverage.
What criminal record check is the most accurate?
Criminal records originate in the county court jurisdiction where the offense occurred and are updated as the case is processed. The county courts then report to the state jurisdictions but the frequency of their reporting varies by jurisdiction.
Is there such thing as a multi-state/nationwide criminal records check?
No. Because most criminal records originate at the county level, it would not be feasible or cost effective to check every county in the country. We do offer the Enhanced Nationwide Criminal Search. However, due to the fact that this is a national database, the accuracy is limited to how often the database is updated. It does provide a cost effective means to gain geographical breadth as an addition to any background check.
How long are criminal records available?
Jurisdictions vary; some counties allow searches of criminal records for 7-15 years. States typically report searches for seven years. Commercial providers can maintain records they have purchased indefinitely.
Where do sex offense records originate?
Sex offenses originate at the local level, but are maintained in each state’s sex offender registry. Sex offenders are in the registry indefinitely, with few exceptions. They are required to update the state when they move or report to a new state if they move outside of the originating state.

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