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Using People Records to Conduct a Background Check

Any time that a major event occurs in someone’s life, a public record is created – from birth to marriage and even arrests and court dates. Your reasons for searching for people records may vary widely, from conducting genealogical research to simply learning more about whether criminal activity exists in a person’s background.

Information in People Records

There are several types of people records that can be accessed by the general public. Marriage and divorce records, arrest records and birth and death information may all be requested from the correct government agency. Many of these are available at the local courthouse where they were created, but nationwide searches must be conducted online, especially if you’re not sure of where the record originated from.

Free public records are available online using search engines that have access to multiple databases of information. Many of these are country-specific, however, so searching for people records from overseas will likely require at least a visit to the respective country’s government websites to determine if you can request public records from them. If you can’t find the documents you want online, it may be necessary to approach the local courthouse in person and request copies of the correct documents. Information that is likely to be included in people records includes physical or mailing addresses, age and/or date of birth, place of birth or death, place and date of marriage and divorce, known aliases, arrest dates and offenses charged with, court dates and incarceration information.

You can use these details to confirm dates and places for a genealogy project, or learn more about the criminal tendencies of a new person in your life. Other types of people records that are public domain include property records, which can provide information about real estate the person owns, taxes owed and even possible relatives living at those addresses. You can also learn general facts about their behaviors such as whether they tend to move around a lot or stay in one place for a long time. Several addresses or other public records located under the same identity but in different areas of the country can be a red flag if this information doesn’t match what the person has been telling you.

Finally, a check of criminal records and court records will divulge information such as any arrests in the person’s past or court cases they have been party to. The general public can access details such as the court dates, formal charges, disposition of the case, and any sentencing information.