• How do I start my background check?

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    The company you applied with will send you an invitation, most likely through email, prompting you to begin your background check. This email will look similar to the image below. Upon receiving this email, click Start Background Check to begin the background check process. 

    If you are having trouble finding the email, be sure to check your Spam folder before reaching out to the company you applied with. 


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  • What is a pre-employment background check?

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    A pre-employment background check collects an individual’s information or records from private and public sources. An employer may obtain information about you from a third party consumer reporting agency for employment purposes. These reports may contain information regarding your credit history, criminal history, motor vehicle records (“driving records”), verification of your education or employment history, or other background checks.

    Your rights are considered and protected by applicable federal, state, and local regulations. 

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  • What information will I need to provide?

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    You will need to submit your personally identifiable information (PII). This includes:

    • Full name (including middle name)
    • Date of birth
    • Social Security Number
    • Current zip code
    • Phone number
    • Email address

    Depending on the role you are applying for, you may be asked to provide additional information like your driver’s license, highest degree earned, or passport number.


    Checkr cannot accept an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN). If you don't have an SSN, please contact the company you are applying to.

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  • How long does a background check take?

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    The industry average turnaround time for most background checks is between 3-5 business days but can take longer than estimated depending on the depth of the search, geographical location of candidates, or county courthouse operations. 

    Most database-related searches (for example, SSN Trace or National Criminal Records Check) are completed within a few seconds because those records are typically available electronically/online. 

    More comprehensive or other types of searches generally take longer. For example, a county records search in a jurisdiction where assistance from a court clerk is required can take several days or even weeks if the court is experiencing backlogs or delays in assisting to complete a search. Or a search that requires validating information that is not available online,  such as an education or employment verification that requires contacting an individual or an organization, may take a few days or even longer to receive the results. 

    The best way to stay updated on the status of your background check is to check the Candidate Portal.

    Looking for more information?

    Information regarding turnaround times for non-U.S. background checks can be found in the following Help Center article: How long does a non-U.S. background check take? 

  • What information shows up on a pre-employment background check report?

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    Pre-employment background checks can reveal a wide range of information about a candidate’s past, including their work history, education, criminal history, and more. Each company has different requirements, which means each company may have different screenings with different scopes to help make an informed choice. For example, ride sharing companies may order a motor vehicle record screening in addition to criminal records screenings. 

    Information that may be included in your pre-employment background check includes, but isn’t limited to: 

    • Reportable criminal records, according to state and federal law,
    • Reportable Motor Vehicle Reports (MVRs): MVRs return data from at least 3 years back, though some state agencies report older violations,
    • Employment verifications: verification of employment over the past 10 years, and 
    • Education verifications: verification of the highest degree obtained.

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  • How far back are records searched, and what records does a background check include?

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    The organization you applied to determines how far back to search for records on your background check. Organizations can request that Checkr use a lookback period of seven years, 10 years, or even further back. 

    For questions about your eligibility for a role or the lookback period, contact the organization you applied to directly. Checkr prepares background reports for organizations and doesn't make hiring, engagement, or retention decisions.

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


    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.


    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


    • 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.


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


    In Kentucky, pending criminal cases are never reportable. Background checks in Kentucky never include pending cases.

  • Why do I need to provide my Social Security number (SSN)?

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    Checkr’s customers often request an SSN Trace as the first screening run in any background check. This screening returns a list of your previous addresses and any other names you may have used based on your credit and banking history. Checkr uses the information returned from the SSN Trace to initiate subsequent screenings as requested by the company ordering your background check report.

    Your SSN will be truncated and encrypted in our protected databases.  

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  • What if I don't have a Social Security number (SSN)?

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    There are screenings that do not require you to have an SSN, such as Motor Vehicle Records and Education Verifications. However, if you are a U.S.-based candidate and you do not have a valid SSN, Checkr is unable to complete a criminal background check. Please reach out to the company you applied to if you have any questions. 


    Checkr cannot accept an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN).

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  • What if I don't have my physical Social Security card?

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    If you are asked to provide a photo of your physical Social Security card, and you do not have your Social Security card, you must contact your local Social Security Administration (SSA) office and request one of the following: 

    • A new copy of your SSN card, or 
    • An ‘SS-5 - Numident record,’ which can be used in place of the Social Security card

    Once either of these documents is obtained, you may upload an image via the Candidate Portal.

  • I can't find my employer or payroll provider, and can’t move to the next step. What do I do?

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    If your employer or payroll provider do not appear when you search for them during the Quick Verification process, you can enter the information manually. 

    1. Click the back arrow in the upper right corner of the pop-up (screenshot below). 
    2. Select Manual entry within the Verify your employment section.