What Does an FBI Background Check Show?

What Does an FBI Background Check Include?

An FBI background check is a detailed report on a person’s criminal history, financial records, and other background information. The FBI conducts these checks for various reasons, such as for employment purposes, security clearances, firearms purchases, or adoption proceedings. Here is an overview of what an FBI background check entails and what kind of information it may reveal:

What is Included in an FBI Background Check?

Criminal History:

This covers any arrests, charges, or convictions for federal, state or local crimes. This includes felonies, misdemeanors, DUIs, and traffic violations. The report will show the dates, locations, charges, and dispositions for any crimes. 


Fingerprints are cross-checked with national databases to look for matches to other crimes where fingerprints were found. This can turn up crimes the person committed under an alias that didn’t show up in a name search.

Employment History:

Previous employers are contacted to verify the person’s work history, positions held, dates of employment, salary, and reason for leaving the job. Gaps in employment may be flagged for further scrutiny.

Credit History:

A comprehensive credit report is run showing all accounts, credit limits, balances owed, bankruptcies, foreclosures, late payments, liens, and negative financial information. Poor credit can be a red flag.

Why FBI Background Checks is Important?

The FBI Background check is an important tool in keeping our society safe. From local stores that hire employees, to large government organizations looking for candidates to fill positions, performing a detailed check of a person’s history is invaluable in making sure that corruption and illegal activities are not going unnoticed. FBI background checks can reveal everything from past criminal convictions all the way to financial records and education levels.

Additionally, having access to such a vast database of information prevents those with nefarious intentions from slipping through the cracks and posing a potential danger to others. Without these background checks we risk unknowingly hiring or trusting someone with a shady past or even dangerous intentions. In today’s world nothing should be left to chance and running comprehensive background checks on individuals serves us all in the long run.

How Long Does an FBI Background Check Take?

Most FBI background checks take anywhere from a few weeks to complete. The following factors affect the timing:

Type of Check:

Criminal records only can be quicker than a full background investigation. Employment checks are faster than national security clearances.

Information Found:

If negative information appears, it takes longer to gather court records, follow up with interviews, or substantiate discrepancies. Clean records complete faster.

Agency Volume:

The FBI processes millions of background checks each year. Turnaround time can vary based on overall volume. Prioritizing cases for national security needs can also delay other applicants.

Applicant Location:

It takes longer to pull records from different court jurisdictions and agencies across multiple states where the applicant lived. Checks within one state or area are quicker.

For most basic employment checks, the FBI aims to complete within 5-10 business days. However, it is not uncommon for applicants to wait 2-6 weeks if clean records require verifying across multiple states. National security clearances almost always take a minimum of several weeks to a few months to fully complete.

An FBI background check includes a review of an individual’s criminal history

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) conducts thorough background checks that include a review of an individual’s criminal history. These reviews look for any records throughout the US, such as fingerprints, arrests, sentences and their disposition. This means that any past offenses that someone may have committed―whether minor misdemeanors or serious felonies―will be discovered during the background check.

It was designed to protect organizations, employers and families by helping them make well-informed decisions prior to hiring or engaging in business with someone. The FBI has set up a process involving several steps to ensure accuracy and conduct these reviews effectively and fairly.

Want to get FBI Background Check Services? Let’s talk

If you’re looking for reliable and secure FBI background check services, PAC Signing Notary is here to help. We are official FBI Channelers and accredited with the FBI in order to provide outstanding background check services. PAC Signing Notary only deals with official federal channels so you can feel confident knowing that your report will be delivered on-time, every time. Furthermore, our Background Check includes all available content from the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) as well as other federal channels. Our team of experienced professionals can answer any questions you have about the process or about PAC Singing Notary so feel free to get in touch and let’s talk!

Bottom Line

An FBI background check includes a review of an individual’s criminal history, credit history, employment history, and education. The check also includes a review of an individual’s social media activity. An FBI background check is required for certain jobs, including positions in the government and law enforcement.