• Resend a candidate's invitation >

    If a candidate's invitation hasn't expired but you need to resend it, use the steps below:

    1. Log in to the Checkr Dashboard.
    2. Select the candidate.
    3. In the "Invitation information" section, copy the link and share it with the candidate. 
  • Order your first background check >

    How you order your first background check depends on whether Checkr set up your account:

    • If Checkr already set up and verified your account or you have a partner integration, use Order a candidate's report.
      If your account migrated from GoodHire, you must first set up your payment information.
    • If you're creating your account yourself, without help from Checkr, use the steps below to get started ordering your first background check.
      1. On Checkr's website, select "Start for free."
      2. Enter your personal information, and select "Get started."
      3. Enter a password for your Checkr account.
      4. Enter your business information.
      5. Select whether you hire in multiple locations.
      6. Select the checkbox to certify your permissible purpose for ordering background checks.
      7. Select Next.
      8. Enter your payment information, and select Next.
      9. Select a package and optional additional searches.
      10. Enter the candidates' email addresses, and select "Place order." Checkr sends emails with invitation links.
        The background check you ordered starts immediately after Checkr verifies your account.
    Try it yourself!

    Go to our learning hub, Checkr Academy, to practice ordering a background check.

  • Disclosure and consent for background checks >

    Before initiating a background check, the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) requires you do the tasks below:

    • Certify to the consumer reporting agency (CRA) your permissible purpose to order background checks.
    • Provide a standalone disclosure to the candidate explaining the scope of the background check you're ordering. States and localities might also require you to provide certain disclosures before ordering a background check.
    • Obtain the candidate's written authorization, which can include electronic authorization, to order a background check for them. This authorization is also called a "consent form."
    Important

    Consult your legal counsel about your compliance responsibilities under relevant federal, state, and local laws.

    Provide proper disclosure

    Before ordering a background check, the FCRA requires you to provide certain documents to candidates. These documents include a "standalone disclosure" explaining the scope of the background check you're ordering. The document should be "clear and conspicuous" to the candidate and include only the disclosure. You should avoid adding the examples below to the standalone disclosure:

    • Application effectiveness periods
    • Disclaimers of accuracy
    • Liability waivers
    • The candidate's consent to the background check

    Adding content to the standalone disclosure is a common legal risk.

    Note

    Some states, such as California, might require standalone disclosures or other specific disclosures, notices, and formatting.

    Consult your legal counsel to confirm your disclosure complies with laws relevant to your operations.

    Obtain the candidate's consent

    How you obtain consent depends on how you order background checks. Select a section below:

    When a candidate begins the background check process through a Checkr invitation link, they enter personally identifiable information. Checkr provides template disclosure notices and consent language on three separate screens in the order below:

    1. A Summary of Your Rights Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act: This document explains the candidate’s rights.
    2. Disclosure Regarding Background Investigation: This document is the default standalone disclosure under the FCRA.
    3. Consent form: This document is where the candidate provides written consent to the background check process. The candidate electronically signs with their full name. The name the candidate signs must match the one they entered earlier in the process. Checkr stores a PDF of the signed form.

    Evergreen consent is a candidate's ongoing permission to order background checks while they’re with your organization. For candidates with evergreen consent, you don't complete the full consent process for every background check you order. Checkr’s template consent form includes evergreen consent language. Consult your legal counsel to confirm your consent form complies with laws relevant to your operations.

    Checkr recommends configuring your implementation of the Checkr API to collect the information below:

    • A unique user name and password associated with the candidate
    • The candidates full name from a signature field
    • A PDF with the data below:
      • Candidate's IP address
      • Date
      • Timestamp

    In an audit, you might need to provide copies of each candidate’s consent form for at least 5 years.

    Evergreen consent through the Checkr API

    Evergreen consent is a candidate's ongoing permission to order background checks during their time with your organization. For candidates with evergreen consent, you don't have to complete the full process for every background check you order.

    The consent form often includes evergreen consent. As a courtesy to customers, Checkr offers template consent forms with evergreen consent language. States and localities might have different evergreen consent requirements. For example, you might consider obtaining consent for every background check you order for California candidates. The FCRA allows for evergreen consent, but California’s Investigative Consumer Reporting Agencies Act (ICRAA) is more ambiguous. Consult your legal counsel to confirm your consent form complies with laws relevant to your operations.

    Download consent forms

    You can download the candidate's most recent consent form from the Checkr Dashboard:

    1. Open the candidate's page.
    2. In the "Report information" section, select Download PDF > Download Consent. 

    You have two options for downloading older consent forms:

    Withdrawn consent

    Checkr won't order a background check on a candidate who withdrew their consent to background checks.

    Sometimes a candidate wants you to order a background check after they already withdrew consent. The candidate must sign a new consent form.

    Candidate experience

    The candidate provides the personally identifying information (PII) below:

    • Birth date
    • Email address
    • Full name
    • Phone number
    • Social Security number (SSN)

    The candidate then reads and acknowledges receipt of applicable forms and notifications:

    • A Summary of Your Rights Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)
    • Disclosure Regarding Background Investigation
    • Other state and required disclosures as applicable
    • Consent for a background check

    After the candidate signs the consent form, Checkr starts the search.

  • Order a candidate's report >

    How you order reports depends on whether you're ordering a candidate's first report or you're ordering a report for an existing candidate.

    New candidates

    How you order a new candidate's report depends on whether you want them to receive an email from Checkr or communication directly from you.

    Email from Checkr

    Use the steps below to invite new candidates by email:

    1. Select "Order background check."
    2. Set the candidate's location.
    3. Select the radio button for "The candidate."
    4. Proceed based on which invitation method you prefer:
      • Up to 200 candidates: Enter the candidates' email addresses, and select Continue.
      • Up to 5,000 candidates: Select Upload CSV, attach the file, and select Upload.
    5. Select a package and optional additional searches.
    6. Review and then submit your order.

    Play the Checkr Academy video below to learn how to order a background check for a new candidate:

    If your account has a hierarchy and at least one node, you can invite candidates by node.

    By default, Checkr sends the invitation every day for seven calendar days until the candidate takes an action below:

    • Authorizes the background check
    • Unsubscribes from the invitation

    To change the frequency of sending invitations, contact Checkr.

    After seven days, the invitation expires. You can cancel an invitation before it expires.

    If you sent the invitation to the wrong email address for the candidate, you need to order a new report with their correct address.

    Communication from you

    Checkr provides an open invitation link that you can send directly to candidates.

    Try it yourself!

    Go to our learning hub, Checkr Academy, to practice ordering a background check.

    Existing candidates

    To order another package or add-on for a candidate, use the steps below:

    1. From the report, select "Add checks."
    2. Select a package or add-on for this candidate. 

    You can order a maximum of three reports for the same candidate in a 24-hour period.

    Duplicate candidate information

    Checkr checks for duplicate personally identifiable information (PII) for the reasons below:

    • Help prevent multiple candidates from using the same PII.
    • Help identify mistakes in candidate-provided PII.

    Duplicate SSNs

    Checkr blocks multiple submissions of the same Social Security number (SSN) within 30 days.

    To submit the same SSN twice within 30 days, contact Checkr to remove the SSN block. You can then create a maximum of two candidates with the same SSN in a 24-hour period. To re-enable the SSN block, contact Checkr.

    Duplicate driver licenses

    You can create a maximum of two candidates with the same driver's license within a 24-hour period.

  • Manually order a candidate's report >

    Checkr enables manual orders by default. Admin users can change the manual orders setting in the Account page of the Checkr Dashboard.

    When you manually order reports, you must supply and retain your own candidate consent documents.

    To manually order background checks from the Checkr Dashboard, use the steps below based on how many people you're ordering for.

    One background check

    1. Select "Order background check."
    2. Set the candidate's location. Candidates must be in the United States (US).
    3. Select the Myself radio button.'
    4. Select "One person."
    5. Select Continue.
    6. Select a package and optional additional searches.
    7. Review and then submit your order.
    8. Enter the candidate's information, and select Continue.
    9. Select whether to send the completed report to the candidate. Some locations require you to send the completed report to the candidate.
    10. Select the checkbox to confirm that your background check order complies with applicable laws and your agreement with Checkr.
    11. Select "Submit order."

    Multiple background checks

    1. Select "Order background check."
    2. Set the candidate's location. Candidates must be in the US.
    3. Select the Myself radio button.'
    4. Select "Multiple people."
    5. Select a package.
    6. Upload a CSV file containing up to 300 candidates' information, and select Continue. If your file has formatting errors, a message lists the affected rows. You can take an action below:
      • Select Remove and then reupload a corrected file.
      • Select "View complete list" to download the list of errors.
      • Select "Remove rows and continue" to automatically remove rows with errors and continue the process.
    7. Select the checkbox to confirm that your background check order complies with applicable laws and your agreement with Checkr.
    8. Select "Submit order."

    Your order history is on the "Payment & billing" page of the Checkr Dashboard.

  • Get an open invitation link >

    Checkr provides an open invitation link you can use to invite multiple candidates in the United States to complete background checks. You might share an open invitation link during hiring events such as job fairs.

    Use the steps below to copy the open invitation link to your clipboard:

    1. In the Checkr Dashboard, open the Packages page.
    2. Select the link icon for the package you want to use. If your account has a hierarchy, select the work location and node.
    3. Select the copy icon to the right of the link.

    Charges for all background checks that candidates complete using the open invitation link appear on your monthly invoice.

     

  • Manage continuous checks >

    The "Continuous checks" page of the Checkr Dashboard has the tabs below:

    • Bulk action
    • Ineligible persons
    • Driver record reports (DL 414)

    The "Ineligible persons" and "Driver record reports (DL 414)" tabs appear only for accounts with Continuous MVR (motor vehicle record) enabled.

    Bulk action

    Use the "Bulk action" tab to perform bulk actions, check their status, and download processing errors.

    Start a bulk action

    To start a bulk action, use the steps below:

    1. From the "Bulk action" tab, select "Start bulk action."
    2. Select a continuous product and an action to perform.
    3. Confirm that your CSV file meets the requirements below:
      • Case-sensitive column names in the first row
      • A column called “candidate_id”
      • Each row with the individual's Checkr-assigned unique candidate ID
      • Fewer than 500,000 rows
      • No personally identifiable information (PII)
    4. If your account uses nodes, confirm that the CSV file also meets the requirements below:
      • A column called, “state” for 2-character United States abbreviations, such as OR for Oregon and TX for Texas
      • A column called, “custom_node_id,” for the custom IDs you assigned to your nodes when you created them
    5. Select the Submit button to upload your CSV file.

    If the file doesn't meet the formatting or size requirements, an alert appears.

    If you’re enrolling or updating individuals, select the checkbox that certifies you completed the tasks below:

    • You provided required disclosures to all individuals.
    • You received proper consent from all individuals.
    Note

    Some states charge a fee for each driver enrollment.

    After the bulk action finishes processing, Checkr sends you a confirmation email.

    Enrollment history

    For each bulk action, the "Enrollment history" section lists one of the statuses below:

    • Processing: The bulk action isn’t finished.
    • Complete: The bulk action finished processing with no errors.
    • Review: The bulk action finished processing with errors.

    When the bulk action has errors, you can download an errors CSV file from the Errors column. The errors CSV file has the information below:

    • The individual's Checkr-assigned unique candidate ID
    • Error reason

    You can download the original bulk action CSV file from the File column.

    Ineligible persons

    The "Ineligible persons" tab lists drivers removed from Continuous MVR because of an error.

    When you enroll a driver in Continuous MVR, the driver license information comes from a previously completed MVR report. States can remove enrollments for invalid or outdated personally identifiable information (PII). Continuous MVR errors can happen immediately after enrollment or up to 30 days later.

    The "Ineligible persons" tab shows individuals removed from Continuous MVR in the last 30 days and the information below:

    • Removal date
    • Candidate ID (Checkr-assigned unique ID for the individual)
    • Individual’s name
    • Error reason

    You can download the last 90 days of your account’s error history. If you need more than 90 days of errors, contact Checkr.

    California drivers only: Driver record reports (DL 414)

    Checkr enrolled in the California Employer Pull Notice (EPN) program so that you can monitor the driving records of people who drive for you.

    A driver’s record, also called driver license printout (DL 414), has the information below:

    • Abstracts of convictions
    • Accidents
    • Driver license application information

    You can search for DL 414 documents using candidate ID and DL 414 creation date.

    To download a PDF of a candidate's DL 414 documents, select Download in the "DL 414 Form" column.

    For compliance purposes, Checkr provides an audit log of each time someone downloads a DL 414 document. To download an audit report log, select "Download audit report."

  • Manage drivers in Continuous MVR >

    Drivers you enroll in Continuous MVR (motor vehicle record) must have both items below:

    • A completed MVR report
    • A valid driver's license issued by a state in the United States (US)

    Continuous MVR is available in the US but not US territories. States can take up to 31 days to process a Continuous MVR enrollment.

    Checkr recommends that you enroll drivers in Continuous MVR immediately after their standard MVR reports complete. This process helps ensure that recent information passes to the department of motor vehicles (DMV).

    Enroll drivers

    Checkr offers the methods below for managing drivers in Continuous MVR:

    • Checkr API
    • Checkr Dashboard
    • CSV file upload

    Checkr API

    To manage Continuous MVR enrollments using the Checkr API, use the Continuous Checks resource in the Checkr API documentation, with type: `mvr`. Checkr API documentation has information about authorizations, path parameters, and responses.

    Checkr Dashboard

    To enroll a driver in Continuous MVR, use the steps below:

    1. In the Candidates page in the Checkr Dashboard, select a driver.
    2. Turn on the toggle for Continuous MVR.
    3. Verify that you have evergreen consent from the candidate.
    4. Select Enroll Continuous MVR.

    To remove drivers, return to the Candidates page in the dashboard and turn off the Continuous MVR toggle.

    CSV upload

    Use the "Bulk action" tab to perform the tasks below:

    • Bulk actions using a CSV upload
    • Check drivers’ statuses
    • Download processing errors

    You use the same "Bulk action" tab to manage Continuous MVR that you use for continuous searches.

    Checkr recommends that you submit your un-enrollment CSV file before the last business day of each month. This prevents those drivers’ Continuous MVR enrollments from continuing into the next month. Enrollments can happen any time.

    To start a bulk action, use the steps for Bulk action.

    Note

    Some states charge a fee for each driver you enroll.

    When the DMV removes a driver's enrollment, it also automatically removes the driver from Continuous MVR. Checkr adds the unenrolled driver to the "Ineligible persons" tab or removes the driver’s enrollment via webhook if using the Checkr API.

    Resolve enrollment errors

    When you enroll a driver in Continuous MVR, the driver's license information comes from a previously completed MVR report. States can remove enrollments that have invalid or outdated personally identifiable information (PII). Continuous MVR errors can happen immediately after enrollment or up to 30 days later.

    To help you manage enrollments, the "Ineligible persons" tab on the "Continuous checks" page shows the drivers removed from Continuous MVR because of an error.

    Error message Description Resolution

    PII doesn't match or can't be located

    Outdated or wrong PII prevents the driver's enrollment. Checkr requests correct PII from the driver.

    Try again to enroll the driver. Checkr might have received correct PII from the driver.

    If the same error happens again, contact the driver for the correct information. Then, order a new MVR report and enroll the driver.

    License already enrolled

    Continuous MVR already has an enrollment for this license.

    You don't need to do anything.

    Can't enroll in license status monitoring

    The driver can't enroll with this PII.

    Order an SSN trace for the driver to enroll in Continuous MVR. If you take no action, Continuous MVR reports new violations but not driver license status changes.

    Driver license changed states

    The driver's license's state changed on the candidate's report in the Checkr Dashboard.

    Review the new state on the candidate's report in the Checkr Dashboard. Then, try again to enroll the driver. Some states charge enrollment fees.

    Person can't enroll electronically

    This driver can't enroll, likely because the DMV is offline.

    Try again to enroll the driver, or ask them to contact the DMV.

    PII altered or removed

    The driver requested that Checkr change or remove their PII.

    Contact the driver to confirm that they requested that Checkr remove their information.

    Remove drivers

    Automatic removal

    Drivers automatically un-enroll from Continuous MVR in the situations below:

    • The driver's license becomes invalid.
    • The driver-provided PII doesn’t match the driver's license.
    • The state stops issuing the driver’s license. For example, the driver moved to another state and got a new license.

    Adverse action

    Continuous MVR might find an incident that indicates that you should process an adverse action. If you use Checkr to process an adverse action against a driver based on a report from Continuous MVR, Checkr also removes the driver from Continuous Crim.

    If your company has a custom adverse action process and doesn't use Checkr’s automated adverse action functionality, you must remove applicable drivers from Continuous MVR to comply with FCRA obligations.

  • Subscribe to recurring background checks >
    Note

    If your Checkr account has a partner integration, this feature might be unavailable. To determine whether your account supports this feature, contact Checkr.

    With subscriptions, you can order recurring reports on a candidate. You can create subscriptions only for candidates in the United States.

    To use subscriptions, you must first obtain evergreen consent from the candidate. This one-time consent informs the candidate that you'll order ongoing background checks. Many organizations include this information in their initial consent form. Other organizations use a new disclosure each time. Check with your counsel for state-by-state guidance.

    After you obtain evergreen consent, use the steps below:

    1. Open the Candidates page of the Checkr Dashboard.
    2. Select the report or invitation you want to add a subscription to. Checkr recommends adding a subscription after the candidate's first background check completes.
    3. In the "Post-hire safety" section, select "Add subscription."
    4. Select a package.
    5. Enter a start date for the subscription. Checkr completes the first recurring check on your subscription's start date.
    6. Enter the monthly interval for the subscription. To order a package annually, enter 12. The next occurrence automatically populates based on your monthly interval.
    7. If the node field appears, select a node.
    8. If the state field appears, state a state.
    9. Select the checkbox to certify that you received evergreen consent from the candidate, and then select "Add subscription."
    10. Check your work, and select Save. To add more subscriptions, select "Add subscription" and complete the information for each new row.

    After you enable subscriptions, you can track candidates with active subscriptions from the Candidates page in the dashboard. From the advanced filters in the Search section, select Subscription as the monitor type.

    To end a subscription, select Delete in the "Post-hire safety" section.

    Note

    From the dashboard, you must manage subscriptions individually. You can mass subscribe or unsubscribe candidates from a subscription only using the Checkr API.

  • FAQs about ordering reports >

    Background check invitations

    There are two reasons the "Order background check" button might not work in the Checkr Dashboard:

    • The "Order background check" button works only after Checkr verifies your account. Verification usually takes up to 2 business days.
    • Some Checkr Dashboard user roles can't order reports. Confirm with your account admin that you have the right user permissions

    For searches within the United States, select the city and state where the person will work. If a person will have multiple work locations, use the location with the strictest reporting requirements.

    For searches outside the United States, select the country where the person will work.

    You can cancel an invitation only if both conditions below are true:

    To cancel an invitation, use the steps below:

    1. Confirm that both conditions above are true.
    2. In the Checkr Dashboard, open the candidate's report.
    3. Select "Cancel invitation."

    If you sent an invitation to the wrong address, order a new report with the correct address.

    You can't edit the email invitation Checkr sends to your candidates to start their background checks:

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    You also can't edit the consent forms for drug tests.

    Checkr can help you edit only the emails below:

    • Welcome message
    • Disclosure form
    • Authorization form
    • Adverse action email

    Working with Checkr to edit an email involves the process below:

    1. Contact Checkr, and specify who will sign the authorization addendum to your customer agreement:
      • First name
      • Last name
      • Email address
      • Job title
    2. Checkr sends you the addendum and a form for outlining your changes.
    3. Return the completed addendum and change form to Checkr.
    4. Checkr's compliance team reviews the changes and then contacts you. Checkr doesn't provide legal advice. Consult your legal counsel about compliance.

    Checkr relies on county courthouses and their clerks to receive the information we need to complete our background checks as accurately as possible. After we request the information, Checkr has no control over how quickly we receive it. Checkr can't expedite the background check process

    To complete a background check, Checkr must access or request information from courts, institutions, and other organizations. We often receive information quickly, such as when it's readily available online. Some information requires manual searches or cooperation from organizations, which can extend the report's turnaround time. Delays might result from the reasons below:

    • The court has no electronic records or is closed.
    • The background check includes a county search, which requires a court clerk to help complete the search.

    Background check process

    The industry average turnaround time for most background checks is between 3-5 business days.

    Some searches, such as national searches or sex offender registry searches, complete in minutes.

    Below are approximate timelines for how long common background check searches take. Delays can make checks take longer.

    Search type

    Average turnaround time

    Employment background check
    (typically includes multiple searches)

    >1 hour to 1-5 days

    Criminal background check

    1-3 days

    Employment verification

     

    1-3 minutes (quick verification) to 2-7 days (manual entry)

    Reference verification

    2-5 days

    Driving record (MVR) search

    >1 hour to 1-3 business days

    Drug test

    10 minutes (onsite) to 3-10 days (lab-based)

    If Checkr can't verify candidate-provided information, we email the candidate a secure link to the Candidate Portal.

    If your candidate can't find the email, use the steps below:

    1. Log in to the Checkr Dashboard.
    2. Open the candidate's report.
    3. In the Exceptions section, copy the verification link and share it with the candidate. Checkr reviews candidate-provided documents and updates the report within 24 hours of the upload.

    Checkr doesn't accept emailed candidate documents. Candidates can log in to the Candidate Portal at any time to provide documents.

    As part of the organization ordering background checks, you determines how far back to search for records during a candidate's background check. You can request that Checkr use a lookback period of seven years, 10 years, or further back. 

    Seven years begins at the "context date," which can vary based on what information courts and other sources of records include.

    Convictions

    Most states allow the reporting of convictions indefinitely. A report can include convictions no matter how old. 

    The states below generally limit the reporting of convictions to only the last seven years:

    • California
    • Kansas
    • Maryland
    • Massachusetts
    • Montana
    • New Hampshire
    • New Mexico
    • New York
    • Washington

    In some of the above states, reports for certain companies include convictions older than seven years because of rules that affect reports for regulated industries.

    Non-convictions

    Most states limit the reporting of non-convictions to only the last seven years.

    A non-conviction could include the case statuses and outcomes below:

    The states below prohibit the reporting of non-convictions:

    • California
    • Kentucky
    • New Mexico
    • New York

    Additional state-specific guidelines

    California

    • Marijuana misdemeanors: Non-felony (misdemeanor) convictions for marijuana possession in California can only be reported for two years from the disposition date.
    • Transportation network or rideshare companies: In California, background checks for transportation network and rideshare companies can report convictions older than seven years.

    Maryland

    Background checks for transportation network and rideshare companies in Maryland search the person's "entire adult history," including convictions older than seven years.

    Kentucky

    In Kentucky, pending criminal cases aren't reportable. Background checks in Kentucky don't include pending cases.

    Social Security numbers and United States candidates

    Checkr requires a Social Security number (SSN) to complete the tasks below:

    • Complete a criminal search.
    • Find aliases.
    • Find previous residences or work locations.

    If a court file includes the SSN, it can help confirm that the record belongs to the right person.

    No Social Security number

    Checkr can complete the searches below for people who have no Social Security number:

    • Motor vehicle record (MVR) search
    • Education verification

    Checkr can't complete criminal searches for people who have no Social Security number. Checkr can't accept an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) instead.

    Non-US screenings

    Background checks outside the US require a Social Security number only if the candidate has previous US employment history. In this case, Checkr might ask the candidate to provide an SSN for employment verification.

    No physical Social Security card

    Candidates who need a physical Social Security card must contact their local Social Security Administration (SSA) office and request an item below:

    • A new copy of the card
    • An SS-5 - Numident record to use instead of the card

    The "SSN already taken" error means that you already have a candidate with that Social Security number (SSN).

    If you need to submit a second candidate with the same SSN, contact Checkr.