What Is Included in a Free Background Check?

Marketing Director

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Portrait of smart businesslike man 30s in white shirt verifying

A background check is a process a person or company uses to verify an individual is who they claim to be. They’re a great way to see if a person is who they say they are, but they’re also great for finding out more about people. So if you’re interested in performing a background check, keep reading to find out what is included in a free background check.

Types of Background Checks


Many different types of background checks can be conducted on an individual. The most common background checks include criminal history checks, driving record checks, and credit history checks. Criminal history checks show any arrests and convictions the individual has had, and driving history checks show any traffic violations or accidents in which the individual has been involved. Credit history checks show any bankruptcies, liens, or judgments that the individual may have, which is commonly needed for mortgage or personal loan approval.

Some employers or government agents may also want to conduct a sex offender registry check or a terrorist watch list check on an individual. A sex offender registry check will show if the individual is registered as a sex offender in any state. A terrorist watch list check will show if the individual is listed on the terrorist watch list maintained by the U.S. government.

Free Background Check Features


Background checks are especially helpful for double-checking basic information about a person. It’s always worth checking to see whether a potential employee isn’t lying about their credentials. When you request a free background check, the following is typically included:

  • Full name
  • Email addresses
  • Family members
  • Date of birth
  • Current and past addresses
  • Previous and current employers

Depending on how robust the report is, it will also list any criminal history as well as financial history. Some background checks even offer links to the person’s social media websites, which is important to check when hiring someone. The more details want, the more likely your background check won’t be free. A free background check is your best option if you’re looking for basic information and past records.

How To Interpret the Results

The results of a background check can vary depending on the type of check that was conducted, but it’s important to keep in mind that some of the information may be outdated, such as current addresses. If someone recently moved, their new address may not be listed yet. It’s best to ask the person’s references and have them provide substantial proof.

A criminal history will include any arrests or convictions that the individual has had in the past. Employment history will show whether or not the individual has been fired from previous jobs or if they have any gaps in their work history. A residence history will show where the individual has lived in the past and whether or not they have been evicted from any of their residences. These results should not be considered definitive but rather one piece of information that you should consider when deciding on someone. It is important to remember that everyone makes mistakes, so don’t automatically discount someone because of something that appears in their background check. However, if red flags indicate that an individual may not be trustworthy or safe to be around, then it is wise to heed those warnings and avoid them.

Overall, the features of a free background check help you determine if a potential employee, tenant, or colleague has any sort of history that could be deemed concerning or inconsistent with their reports. This information can help you make an informed decision about whether or not to proceed with the individual.