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Public Criminal Records Search Online

May 8, 2008
It is estimated that 30% of Americans will have criminal records of some kind in their lifetime. That means there are easily millions of us who are technically criminals at some point in our life. Seriously, the dangerous ones are the ones we are concerned about. Those behind bars will get out in due course and they are the ones we should watch out for. So how can we tell them apart?

We can indeed quite readily find out the truth about people on many things, past and present, not least their criminal history or current standing from their Public Criminal Records. There are several other related supportive-type record categories such as Arrest, Inmates, Jail, Sex Offender and Police Records but Criminal Records Check is the most widely used as far as Criminal Violation Checks are concerned.

Criminal Records are Public Records. They are accessible by anyone as long as procedures are followed and Public Criminal Records can be requested directly from the local police department if you know the subject's exact residence. It can be done by mail, in person, telephone, fax or online nowadays. They can even be obtained from the FBI but it must be requested in writing. Another option is to purchase them from commercial information providers.

A great deal of information can be found in Public Criminal Records. At a basic level, it includes the personal particulars and bio-data of the subject, the details of the criminal violation like the time and place, case type and number, conviction and arresting agency and pertinent information from other related record categories. In the case of repeat offenders, the complete list of all the violations within the particular state will show up.

Public Criminal Records are governed by state laws. As such, there are variations between the states in terms of their access and the treatment and permissible use of the information derived from them. As is common in public records, the respective state records are also not linked and as a result, Public Criminal Records documented in one state will not show up in a search conducted for another.

People use Public Criminal Records for a multitude of reasons the most prominent of which are in screening employees, assessing volunteers, police investigation, supporting court cases and social background checks on neighbors, colleagues and even friends and relatives. One thing to note is that there are strict laws governing privacy protection and individual discrimination in regard to Public Criminal Records. Experts and professionals are often required to determine their proper application.

There are two versions of Public Criminal Records namely the free-of-charge (FOC) and paid ones. The majority of FOC records are from government agencies. The procedures to obtain them are usually tedious and require waiting time. Paid records from commercial information brokers are the no-fuss answer for those who are not game to the challenge of red tapes. A financial cost is incurred but they are generally worth the money.
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