Frequently Asked Questions
If you are NOT a U.S. Citizen or legal permanent resident, or if your request is for EMPLOYMENT/LICENSING within the United States, you must submit your order directly to the FBI CJIS Division. Visit the FBI website for more information.
What is U.S. Departmental Order 556-73 and 28 CFR Part 16?
As related to CFR 28 Part 16, subpart C, and in accordance with an order dated September 24, 1973, the Attorney General of the United States directed that the FBI publish rules for the dissemination of arrest and conviction records, upon request, to the individual subjects of such records. In accordance, the FBI shall release copies of such records upon the submission of a written request, satisfactory proof of identity of the requesting individual, and a processing fee. For more detailed information regarding these regulations, contributing agencies and definitions please visit: https://www.fbi.gov/services/cjis/identity-history-summary-checks/us-department-of-justice-order-556-73.
What information is provided in my FBI Criminal Report/FBI Identification Record report?
The FBI report you will receive is often referred to as a "Rap Sheet." This detailed report will provide you with a complete listing of the information received and maintained by the FBI in connection with arrests. In addition, this account may include data connected with federal employment, naturalization, and/or military service. The data provided will contain the date and name of the agency from which the data was gathered. Criminal offense records will disclose the date of arrest or the date the individual was received by the submitting agency, the arrest charge(s), and the arrest disposition(s) if it is known.
Where can I get my fingerprints taken?
Fingerprints can be captured and submitted electronically at a National Background Information Preferred Live Scan Location. Electronic submissions eliminate the need to mail fingerprint cards, which may shorten the time it takes to receive your personal criminal history report. Please be sure to bring two forms of identification for verification, at least one of which must be a government issued photo ID.
You may also contact your local, county, or state law enforcement agency to schedule a fingerprinting appointment. Some live scan facilities also offer ink-rolling options. Be sure that your fingerprints are rolled by a trained technician. You may consider having two sets of prints ink-rolled, if the images are questionable.
Where do I get fingerprint cards?
Most law enforcement agencies and/or live scan facilities have fingerprint cards available upon request. Please be sure to request the use of the standard FBI Fingerprint Form (FD-258). You may also visit the FBI website to download a card for print at https://www.fbi.gov/file-repository/standard-fingerprint-form-fd-258-1.pdf.
If I have been fingerprinted in the past, can you use those fingerprints?
No, we cannot accept previously rolled fingerprint images. Your fingerprint images cannot be transferred between organizations. You are required to obtain a new set of ink-rolled fingerprints for submission with your request.
How long does it take to have my fingerprints rolled?
Typically, it takes approximately 5-10 minutes for a trained technician to ink-roll your fingerprints onto a single fingerprint card.
What information do I need to submit?
The FBI requires that you provide the following information:
Name/Alias (if applicable)
Date of Birth
Country of Citizenship
City and State of Birth
Eye Color/Hair Color
Also, when you arrive at a location for fingerprinting, you will be required to provide two (2) forms of identification, one of which must be a government issued photo ID. The following are acceptable forms of photo identification:
State Issued Driver's License
State Issued Identification Card
Work Visa (with photo)
Military Identification Card
Can I request a copy of my FBI Criminal Report for employment or licensing purposes within the US?
No. You may not request a copy of your FBI Criminal Report for employment or licensing purposes within the United States, pursuant to DO 556-73 and under the regulatory authority of 28CFR16.32. However, you may request a copy of your FBI Criminal Report for working outside the United States, as for a forgeign work visa.
Will the personal information I provide be protected?
As a provider of background screening information for over 30 years, we are committed to, and experienced in, the highest level of security. We follow a strict security protocol that allows us to maintain access to FBI information, as well as other sensitive information. You can rest assured that we will handle your request with your security in the highest regard.
Can I view my FBI Criminal Report online?
Yes. An online access code will be emailed to you when the report is ready, usually within 24 to 48 hours after we receive your fingerprints. Be sure to clearly print your email address on the application form. Online access to your report is included at no extra charge. Because of FBI restrictions, online access is limited to IP Addresses originating within the United States.
How is my FBI Criminal Report sent to me?
At this time, National Background Information can send you a hard copy of your report via US Mail, USPS Priority Mail, or FedEx.
Do you mail FBI Reports in a separate, sealed envelope?
When mailing more than 1 copy of the FBI Report, each additional copy will be sealed in its own envelope. For example, if you request a total of 2 copies, the 1 extra copy of the FBI Report will be in a separate, sealed envelope.
We'll mail the results, based upon your shipping request. If you ask for 2 total copies via First Class Mail, the 1 additional report will be in a separate, sealed envelope but mailed in the same First Class envelope.
Similarly, if you request USPS Priority Mail or FedEx shipping, the additional copy would be in a separate, sealed envelope, but still in the same Priority Mail or FedEx envelope. So there would not be any additional shipping charges. The only additional charges would be for the extra copies of the report.
How long will it take to get my report?
FBI Criminal Reports are usually delivered via US Mail within 5-7 days from the day the order is received and processed. Orders are normally processed the day they are received; however, an incomplete application or missing information will delay processing.
National Background Information offers expedited shipping options for an additional fee: 2-3 days via USPS and overnight delivery via FedEx.
Our charge is $39.95 for your FBI Criminal Report. Accepted methods of payment include – Cashier's Check, Money Order, MasterCard, Visa and American Express.
You will likely incur a fee for the collection of your fingerprint. This fee can vary, typically $5 to $40, depending upon the location and method you choose to capture your fingerprint.
What happens if my fingerprint images are rejected?
When having fingerprints ink-rolled, be sure to have a complete set of fingerprints taken by a trained technician. If your fingerprints are rejected, you have the option to submit additional sets of fingerprints and incur the standard report charge each time. At no time will National Background Information (National Credit Reporting) be able to conduct a "name search" of the FBI Criminal Report information - all FBI reports must be matched on fingerprint images.
Will my fingerprint cards be returned to me?
In efforts to protect personally identifiable information and to meet FBI security requirements, your fingerprint cards will be destroyed within 30 calendar days of the retrieval of your FBI Criminal Report. Therefore, it is very important for you to contact National Background Information if you have not received results within 21 days.
Can you send my FBI Criminal Report to an address outside of the United States?
No. The FBI does not allow CJIS Channelers to disseminate FBI Criminal Report information outside of the United States.
Can my FBI Criminal Report results be sent to another individual?
You may have your FBI Criminal Report mailed to a designated attorney, if identified in your FBI Criminal Report Request. For reports to be utilized by an attorney, please see specific instructions below.
How can I submit a request from my attorney?
When requesting an FBI Criminal Report for use by your attorney, you must provide a written request on your attorney's letterhead. The written request must include your signature as well as your attorney's signature, and it must indicate that the FBI Criminal Report information results are to be released to your attorney.
How can I update or dispute my FBI record?
The data contained in FBI Criminal Reports is compiled from information provided by local, state, and federal agencies. Thus, the correction of these records must be handled by the contributing agency. You are required to contact the appropriate agency or central repository (i.e. police department, county courthouse, etc.) in the state of the arrest record to request further information, correction, or updating. The FBI CJIS Division does not have the authority to modify any criminal history information.
Incorrect State (Non-Federal) Information:
In most cases, you will be required to submit a change request to the state's central repository.
Incorrect Federal Information:
These records are typically updated by the FBI when the request is made directly from the arresting agency or from the court of record.
Challenging Information Reported by the FBI:
You may challenge your criminal history information if you have proof or supporting documentation as to the discrepancy in question. A written record challenge request must be sent, along with your supporting documentation, to the following address:
FBI CJIS Division
Attn: Correspondence Group
1000 Custer Hollow Road
Clarksburg, WV 26306
The FBI CJIS Division will only commence updates to records if/when they have confirmed such changes with the appropriate parties.
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