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how to do a background check on myself

Before applying for a job, many people ask ‘how do I run an employment history background check on myself?’

The benefits of checking what shows up on a background check, especially previous work experience, can mean the difference between landing a dream job or being passed over by another applicant.

But, before learning the answer to ‘how to conduct an employment history background check on myself,’ there are some things to understand.

  • Employment history doesn’t show up on all background checks
  • A full lifetime employment history is available from the Social Security Administration
  • Most background checks will only show the last seven years, so experience from before that time should be cataloged

This full guide breaks down all the options that anyone can use to check their employment history online, and do an ’employment history background check on myself.’

Employment Background Checks on Myself (How To Get A Background Check On Yourself For Employment)

What do companies look for in a background check? In addition to driving records (MVR report), criminal history records, court records, social security number verification, professional license verification search, and other public records, companies want to know about previous work experience and work history.

Although most people know most of the places they’ve worked, running a complete employment history check can help pinpoint forgotten jobs and companies that might show up.

An employment history background check will examine a variety of public and private sources to find out where someone worked, why they left that position, and whether or not they might be worth hiring.

Since the HR process is both expensive and time-consuming, the employment history check can help weed out any applicants who might look at risks.

For example, if someone has an employment history that features 12 different jobs in the course of three years, a company may consider that person unreliable or suspect the transient nature would continue, which could cost them money.

Run A Background Check on Yourself

The easiest way to get the employment history a potential new employer will see is to run a background check on yourself, either using the DIY method or by using a 7 day free trial background check from an agency. This way the one time background check will be free, because the membership can be cancelled (usually) after the report is done.

Of course, the full history of employment (as well as reasons for termination) won’t show up. The only time being fired shows up on your record is if the firing was related to a criminal offense at work.

Where To Find Employment History Online

To find employment history, there are some online companies that claim to have it and that can be searched.

However, when doing an employment history background check on myself, users can use the Social Security Agency’s Request for Social Security Earnings Information10 form.

The cost is $92, but it provides users with a complete, lifelong earnings history of every job where they have worked, how much money they made, and the full names and addresses of every employer.

Want to skip the manual process? Reach out to a background check agency that offers a free criminal background check to see the results of an employment history background check on me without the wait.

Although the results may not go back farther than seven years, this is a good option for those who want to get their employment history online for free.

Does Employment History Show on Background Check? (Does a Background Check Show Work History?)

Since an employment history background check is designed to see a person’s work records and consistency, it’s a standard part of many pre-employment background checks.

And, if there are parts of the work history that may cause red flags, knowing how to remove those before an employer sees them can be crucial for preventing a failed background check.

Benefits of Conducting an Employment History Background Check on Myself

There are a number of benefits to conducting a self-background check.

  • It is easier to anticipate questions that may be raised from a background check due to the information on a person’s history check.1
  • It is possible to uncover any possible errors in the available online information and then correct the information.
  • The information outsourced from background checks can be used in the future when requested in interviews and other relevant platforms.

What Shows Up From an Employment History Background Check on Myself? (What Does a Background Check Show About Employment History?)

When conducting an employment background check individually,6 these are some of the elements that will show up in the search:

Social Security Number Verification:

There will be a report on the names associated with SSN and reflections on any other name changes due to legal or marital reasons. This information is usually set up and outsourced from the social security administration website. Once a portal is created on the website, social security number details will be possible to access.

Credit Report

The three major national credit bureaus, Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion, give free yearly reports. These reports provide a summary of debt and a detailed history of the payment history with clear indications of payments that were missed or made 30 or more days late.

The credit report lists any past and current debt, including loans and accounts information. It also indicates any accounts that have been turned over to lenders for collections. Bankruptcies that have been filed within the past ten years will also appear in the records.

Address History

A background check will be able to identify the addresses associated with a particular name from different sources such as credit card statements under someone’s name. The address’s background check usually covers the residences that have been occupied in the last seven years. The addresses are used to produce and cross-check other records in this category, such as criminal and driving records. Incorrect address information may lead to different negative check results, so it is vital to ensure these address histories are accurate.

Driving Records

Motor vehicle records (MVR report) are obtained from the state department of motor vehicles and can also be ordered online. These records go across the different states that may have been acquired from another state in 25 years.

Criminal History

In the criminal background check, any charges that caused arrests in the past seven years will be shown. The criminal background checks show criminal convictions, imprisonment, parole, and probation. FCRA has limits in their law statutes7 to protect employers from searching for information past seven years except when the position has a salary of 75,000 or more. The state laws on criminal checks also vary.

Education and Work History

As a means of confirming the attendance of mentioned schools that are stated in the applicant’s resume, education history will run a search through the databases of the particular schools. The companies listed in the resume will also be searched to certify that employment in this company is accurate according to the specified role and period.

Specialized Watch List

Background checks also include specialized records including watch lists for sex offenders whose records are maintained by the state and the local jurisdiction. It also contains lists of suspected terrorists that the federal government maintains.

How To Do an Employment History Check on Myself? (3 Steps for Past Employment History Check)

Doing a comprehensive employment background history check individually is straightforward, as many background check platforms provide access to extensive public records. The process does not require complex technical capabilities as all that is needed is the first and last name together with relevant addresses.2

Doing a background check on self makes it possible to be aware of and control the information received. Doing away with the frustration and intensity of waiting for an employer’s response as they review a background check is possible. The time for the employment background check results to be received varies with the results needed.

How To Run A Background Check On Yourself (How Can I Get A Background On Myself?)

The comprehensive background check process is easy when using an agency. However, when doing a self-background check, the steps require a little more time.

Applicants simply need to navigate to various websites to request the record information that an employer will see. These include:

Criminal History

Step 1. Navigate to the state Police Department.

For example, if a person lives in Chicago, they would search Illinois State Police.8

While on the site, there are two quick links on the right: Sex offender registry12 and Criminal History Services.13

Step 2. Click on Each Quick Link

For the sex offender registry, agree to the disclaimer and proceed to the search function which allows names to be entered to perform the free search.

For the Criminal History Services, choose “criminal history”14 from the menu, then “what’s on my record.”15

Step 3. Follow the instructions outlined on the page for the “records access and review process.”16

Public Records

To access the public records an employer may see, navigate to the county clerk’s office. In Chicago, the Cook County Clerk17 website.

From this page, users can search vital records (like birth, death, and marriage licenses) as well as voter registration and other address histories in the county.

Professional Licenses

To conduct a professional license verification search, use a search engine to find the correct department.

For example, search “real estate license in North Carolina.”

The results will direct users to the North Carolina Real Estate Commission.11

Follow the instructions on the page to update or verify the license. This technique works for all state-regulated licensure.

Related ReadingBackground Check for Real Estate License: 8 Requirements (Search Now)

Credit History

To obtain credit history (which sometimes includes the information needed for an employment history background on myself), contact the Free Annual Credit site, provided by the U.S. government.

Full Employment History

Use the link above to fill out the Social Security Agency’s form to get a full, lifetime earning report, complete with all the names and addresses of every previous employer.

How Background Check Softwares Run Background Checks

Running your background check through a background checking agency performs the checks above using software to make it easy to access the different information that is scattered through different platforms in a central place. This saves time and other resources because of its convenience.

For this process, the search is simple.

Step 1: Compliance And Personal Details

The first thing that will appear on a background check site is the disclosures and regulations that show that these sites are compliant with FCRA. Such regulations include not reporting arrests that happened more than seven years ago that did not lead to a conviction and staying compliant with state laws on background checks.

The next section will have slots for inputting the necessary information to pull up records on background checks. This information includes official names, addresses, and dates of birth

The applicant has to provide consent before the background check process can begin. After reading the provided disclosure, e-signs will be needed by the site to show the applicant’s consent. Then the process of verification and checking begins taking an average of four days to process the reports.

The time usually varies with the different county courthouse operations as criminal records are outsourced from them, the location of an applicant, and the depth or scope of details that are required.

The fastest most time-consuming databases to check through include the National Criminals Records check, the sex offender registry check, social security number trace, and the global watchlist records check.

Step 3: Receiving Check Results

After checks are completed, the provider uses the information that had been keyed in to send the results to the ordering party via email. They will be received and further action can be taken as the ordering party sees fit.

Why Run My Own Background Check? Be Ahead of the Game

An employment history background check on an individual reveals several things, such as their criminal record and employment history, among others.4 The significant benefits of running a personal background check include:

  • Identifying and correcting mistakes: many people may not conduct personal background checks because they think the checks will not turn up anything negative. Sometimes, there may be instances of identity theft or shared names and birth dates that may cause results to be confused. Discovering these errors early on makes it possible to fix the inaccuracies in time.
  • Confirm the details on a  resume: running an employment background check before the job interview ensures that the details shown in the resume are not misinterpreted or inaccurate.
  • Owning their record: with the knowledge of what infractions may show up on anyone’s employment background check, they can be prepared for the questions they may ask by hiring managers. It is also possible to alert and explain to hiring managers any issues that arise during the background check to hiring managers.

Information That Is Not Included In Public Background Checks

In compliance with the rights and freedoms of employees and employers,9 some information will not be available to the public, such as:5

  • Information on juvenile criminal records: juvenile records are not included, as most juvenile offenses are not released to the public. Many courts and states do not provide information for those under 17 years of age.
  • Credit history: credit history is not provided in criminal records, as it is considered private information. However, some jobs permit background checks to examine credit history.
  • Social security number information: this is not provided to the public domain, as it is also considered private information.
  • Bank account information: the direct bank account information is not provided in the public records, but information on bankruptcy is provided as part of financial records.

When You Can’t Find Your Results, This Is Why

Some of the most common issues with background checks include:

  • Incorrect information was keyed in, such as misspelled names and incorrect dates of birth.
  • Hyphenation of names or inclusion and exclusion of some initials and suffixes to the name.
  • The available public records do not have the name or date of birth that is keyed in
  • The subject being searched is recorded as a minor
  • The use of two first names, such as Elizabeth Ann, instead of a single first name and last name.
  • Using nicknames instead of full legal names that are provided
  • The use of a middle name as a first name as court records use subjects’ first name.

When learning how to run an employment history background check on myself, the process involves checking a number of databases or simply reaching out to a trusted agency to present the complete report.