Civil Records Check
A Civil Records background check will identify non-criminal lawsuits filed at the county level. These records will reveal:
- personal injury lawsuits
- tax liens
- breach of contract
- and more
There are three categories of a civil records check:
Federal Civil Court
Federal Civil Records checks include alleged violations of federal laws or constitutional rights. These civil cases are brought by individuals, businesses, or governmental entities who may be seeking monetary damages, requesting injunctions to stop alleged illegal behavior, or monetarily pursuing other remedies provided by law.
Upper-Level Civil Court
Upper-level Civil Records checks are generally for higher value cases, such as divorce or other more substantial monetary settlements. These typically do not violate federal law, but are of higher value than small claims cases.
Lower-Level Civil Court
Lower-level Civil Records checks identify cases with a value less than $5,000. Examples include eviction, small claims, and minor disputes that generally would not fall into the upper-level and federal civil court cases.
What's Included in a Civil Records Check?
- Level of court
- File number
- File date
- Defendant name
- Cause of action
When Should I Order a Civil Records Check?
A civil records check is recommended pre-employment for candidates that have a management position or access to money, merchandise, or assets. It is also a good source of information for cases involving sexual harassment or discrimination, as well as property damage. You want to ensure that these employees have a clean history before you give them access to any sensitive information or valuable assets.
A civil records check must be FCRA compliant, this means a few things for you. You should first inform them of your intention to run a background check and notify them that this can affect your hiring decision. Then you must get their consent to run a civil records check and give them a chance to view and correct any errors on the application and check results.
Failure to comply with FCRA laws and regulations will result in penalties.
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