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Free Public Record Search in United States

This site is a free public record search service to the consumer, helping you get results for your background checks and and people searches. Learn how you can Locate People, Check Backgrounds, Find loved ones, old friends all for free. Conduct free asset search, free business checks. Check Corporations, business licenses, professional license. If you need to do free background checks, asset search, criminal record search, and locating people try some of the links to the left to find free resources. Most states you can public record searches for free as long as you do it yourself. There are courts and law enforcement agencies who provide computers and capabilities to research public records for free, usually there are nominal fees for copying however if you don't need to get a copy of the document then all your search is free. Other government organizations charge you a fee if you need a certified report such as a certified criminal check.

Where to start your free background search?

Search Engines

You know the best place to find information on anyone is in the search engine, such as Google, Yahoo, etc. It is free but the world wide web contains a lot of information. Start by the name, use commas, and more information, location, education, anything that will pinpoint the person you are looking for. And don't forget to check the specialized categories such as "image", "news" etc. I have personally found friends I was out of touch with after 30 years who had moved to another country, I found her through a credit on a project she was involved in and one thing leads to another and was finally reunited with my good friend once more. It is amazing what information you can find.

Social Networks

I know there has been a lot of negative media covered about social networks but millions of people still use them and if you are looking for someone or trying to learn about their interest and background it is a good place to research.


Of course, Facebook is one of the major social networks but there are others as well.


Twitter is another social network that reveals a lot about a person plus it is another tool to contact someone if you are looking for someone you lost touch with.

Professional Networks


Professional networks such as Linkedin provide a lot of information you get educational and employment information as well as connections, interests, groups and any posts which shed a light on anyone's activities and background.

People Search Engines

People search engines are sites that specialized in contact information about people. It is a historical collection of where people have lived, addresses they used their contact information such as phone numbers and emails. Many of them are readily available and free.

White Pages

Now available in most counties around the world, you can search by name and sometimes reverse searches such as phone number shows you results. An excellent way to search for contact information about a person.

Yellow Pages

Don't ignore the business directory, some people conduct business under their name or once you know or find out where someone works you might be able to find out more details about it.

  1. Also check review of other services available online for people search or background checks.

Search Public Records Free for Totally Free Background Checks

This is a free consumer site that helps you with free background checks, free asset search, free criminal record search, and locating people. A directory providing you with resources and links to public records. Making it easier to find the information you need.

Can you really get a 100% Free Background Check?

Yes, if you do all the leg work and find the government source that provides background checks and criminal history checks free of charge, then it won't cost you anything. This site not only provides you with information with running free background checks but you can actually find sources for free background checks. Simply click on Free Background Check link at the top of the page and select the state you would like to get a free background check in, you will find more details and links to free background check resources. Keep in mind in some states for certain reports there are fees. If you prefer to get an instant background check including criminal records online then try some of the online background check services which charge $20 to $50 for an instant background check.

Top reasons for running background checks or checking criminal history

1. Employment background check - most employers run background checks and do employee screening in order to insure integrity of employee performance and and safety and quality of workplace. Employment screening is run as usual part of a job application and offer of employment. The employee screening is governed by FCRA and can only be done with the permission of the applicant or prospective employee.

2. Dating Background Check - with popularity of the internet communication and dating sites and opportunities many people run background checks to find more details regarding prospective dates and relationships. This helps insure safety as well as provide information such as prior marriages and divorces or other information that could effect interpersonal relationships.

3. Hiring a Nanny - Before bringing a stranger into your home and leaving them with the most important family members such as your children it is wise to run a background check or check for criminal records.

4. Hiring a contractor, dentist, lawyer or others who provide services - It is customary to check references or sometimes check criminal background of those you would like to get into a professional relationship in.

5. Educational reasons - some universities or colleges might want to check into criminal history and background of prospective students in order to insure the safety on campus.

6. Witnesses - legal professionals sometimes need to check the background of witnesses to avoid any problems during the legal process.

7. Applying for a license - whether applying for a childcare licence, professional licenses, to work and take care of elderly a criminal record history check will be run to attest to the character of the person applying and being given license to practice in a responsible capacity.

8. Applying for a Loan - a background check might be run for a loan or mortgage applicant to assess the reliability of repayment of a loan

9. Applying for a rental housing - most landlords run background checks and criminal checks on prospective renters to insure quality renters and avoid delinquencies and problem tenants.

10. Travel - Sometimes when you travel as part of a visa requirement you will be required to provide a criminal record or police clearance.

11. Immigration - as part of immigrating or gaining residency you could be asked for a background check or FBI Record.

12. Buying a Gun - most states follow federal guidelines on top of state requirements for those who are interested in acquiring or carrying a weapon.

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What if you need a background check to hire someone?

Running a background check for employment or hiring someone is not as simple as doing it yourself or using most online services. In the United States there are federal laws protecting individuals and to run a background check you need to adhere and follow these rules. Every employer has a right to require a background check during the process of hiring someone. It does not make a difference if you are a fortune 500 company or just a parent hiring a nanny. Plus when you are making a very important decision you need to ensure that you do get access to all the information not only locally or your state but federally as well as any other location a person might have lived or committed a crime. So it is important to find a company that has access to accurate data that can provide you with meaningful results. A good turnaround time, in a business or employment situation time, is critical to make decisions and make an offer. You could easily lose a well-qualified candidate to a competitor if you are not fast. But above all, you need to ensure that the service and your investigation are compliant with all federal and local laws. So when it comes to employment use a reliable service that specializes in the employment background check. It is not that hard to find them, most have an online presence and what is important is to make certain their service is FCRA compliant.

FCRA or Federal Credit Reporting Act is a law that governs running credit checks and background checks and regulates the collection of consumer credit information. It addresses how credit reports are accessed and create fair means to correct inaccuracies contained in the reports. This law was passed in 1970 and can be found in the United States Code Title 15, Section 1681. It protects the privacy of personal information. This is also the law that provides every individual with fair and free access to their report and information to review and correct for any discrepancies. This act is enforced by two major federal agencies: Federal Trade Commission or (FTC) and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)

FCRA also insures who can see the information, that is why a special request needs to be signed by each prospective employee to give you permission to initiate your request. But in some circumstances such as your mortgage companies they might be able to access your information on a reasonable intervals to ensure you still meet the criteria set in your contract. Governmental agencies as well as court systems might also have access for instance if you are applying for a goverment-issued license. However not in all but most circumstances the individual must have initiated the transaction. It also allows each individual to request a free copy of their credit report from each of the three major credit companies.

What is regulation V?

Regulation V is a federal regulation that protects confidential information for consumers in their credit report. Regulation V is administered by Federal Reserve Bureau FRB it relates to FCRA and is specific to credit bureau information. However not that CFPB now has the regulatory role for FCRA and not the Federal Reserve Bureau.

How about public records?

There are also rules in each state that govern and protect consumer information and privacy.

In California:

Most public records are available via Internet or other sources; though public records are "public", their accessibility is not always simple, free or easy. Also each state could have laws and regulations around public records such as in California:

California Public Records Act

And in New York

The New York Freedom of Information Law are a group of laws that guarantee the public access to public records of governmental bodies in New York. First New York public record law was passed in 1974 which was repealed and replaced in1977. New and important amendments added to the law in 1982, 2005, and 2008. A public record is explained as any information kept, held, filed, produced by, with or for an agency or the state legislature, in any physical form whatsoever. This law also covers documents if a promise of confidentiality has been given, when in temporary possession of someone else, or if they have come into possession of the government though they were not originiated by the government.

New York anyone can request public record and there is no requirement to supply a statement of purpose. If the information request or request for a list is for commercial or fund-raising then The New York Freedom of Information Law allows agencies to deny these requests.. However, once records have been obtained there are no restrictions as to how they might be used.

New York Freedom of Information Law

What is a Free Public Records Search?

Free public records are information which are gathered over the years in variety of public agencies or by public and government entities such as courts, be it supreme court, municipal or state court, police or sheriff offices, assessor's office or other public agencies. Anyone can conduct free public record searches in many of these agencies and organizations. Also keep in mind most online people search sites let you do preliminary searches for free, only if you choose to get a report you pay. The information provided for free is name, age, aliases, relatives and city and states lived.

What information is included in an Instant Background Check?

Background check from online providers and services usually include a lot of information that is available from public record databases such as full name and aliases, contact information, age, address history with location of different places lived, marriage and divorces, neighbors, relatives and acquaintances, sometimes professional or work related information, licenses, bankruptcies, judgements, criminal history, civil judgments, liens, and death records if the person is deceased. In general if it exist in the public domain then the possibility is that it will be included in the report.

How far does the information on Background Checks go?

Usually information on background checks provided by online background check services and platformas cover most of the adult life any criminal or civil activity will appear on these reports and for nationwide reports will include all different states you have lived in. However based on jurisdiction there are local, county and state rules that could limit the date or type of information included in the report. If you are also checking a report for someone older keep in mind not all data has been computerized and there could be data that might be missing but with time all these data quality improves.