A California criminal background check (RAP Sheet) [Step by Step Guide]
A California criminal background check (RAP Sheet) is not easy to come by. Court records are old, and they disappear. After a criminal conviction for a misdemeanor or felony, you will need to fill out applications expunging your case.
The information you need may include the place of arrest, criminal convictions, charges, courthouse, and case number. However, you will not have all this information at your fingertips. By using the steps below, you can get a copy of your RAP sheet and begin the process of cleaning your record.
You Can Get a Record of Everything That Happened to You From a California Criminal Background Check
A California criminal background check will show everything you were arrested, even if you did not get convicted for it. It’s important to know that a Background check reports everything. It does not just include convictions but will also have your arrest record even if they were not charged.
You Will See Arrest That You were Never Charged for in Your California Criminal Background Check.
As a result of this, there are many uncharged domestic violence, arrest, and robberies on people’s criminal records. This causes a surprise when people finally see their criminal history record and realize they had a robbery arrest when their case only resulted in a shoplifting conviction.
The Rap Sheet from a California Criminal Background Check are Official Documents that are controlled.
Under the California Information and privacy act you are protected from anyone requesting this document for job position purposes or to make a rent applications decision. In addition, It’s also important to know that this is a controlled document. Nobody is allowed to have this document other than you and the law enforcement agency. This means that it is illegal for anyone else to have access to your criminal history from a RAP Sheet for employment purposes (employers as part of a job applicant and landlords for rent requirements for making decisions)
Send This Form in to Get Your California Criminal Background Check.
By sending this form to the Department of Justice, you will have access to your RAP Sheet, which is equivalent to a California criminal background check. This document will be helpful to know what type of convictions employers will see when they do their criminal background check on you.
The RAP Sheet (California Criminal Background Check) is more exhaustive than anything an Employer will See.
Employers use their background checks which are not as thorough as the RAP sheet, to screen job applicants for criminal history. Still, it will only include convictions for misdemeanors and felonies and arrests. Their background checks will only include misdemeanor and felony offenses, resulting in a conviction as opposed to the RAP sheet, which consists of all criminal activity.
By sending in this form to the Department of Justice you will be to access your California criminal background check.
To get your California Criminal Background Check done, you will need to fill out the forms below. Once you fill out the form, then you will need a livescan location. There are many places that provide livescan services. After you submit the application for the livescan, then you will watch your mailbox. It will take a few weeks after you send in the request form to get your California Criminal Background Check. The processing times to get your California Criminal Background Check will range from about 4 to 6 weeks.
Total Time: 30 days
Understanding the Need for a Background Check
You may need to expunge your case but lack exact details about the arrest and conviction, including the year, month, and case number. A background check can help in getting this information.
Recognizing What is Included in a Background Check
A California criminal background check, or RAP sheet, will show every arrest, not just convictions. It includes uncharged domestic violence and robberies, revealing surprises for many regarding their criminal history.
Knowing Your Rights Regarding Your Background Check
The California Information and Privacy Act protects your background check information from being accessed for employment or rental application decisions, except by law enforcement and yourself.
Downloading and Completing the Form
Download the BCIA 8016RR form from the Department of Justice website and complete it accurately.
Action Steps:Go to the Department of Justice website.
Download form BCIA 8016RR.
Fill out the form to the best of your ability.
Locating a Livescan Service
A Livescan is required for your background check and can be obtained at various locations, including police stations and UPS stores.
Find a Livescan location.
Submit your fingerprints.
Waiting for Results
After submitting the Livescan, wait for 4-6 weeks for your criminal background check to arrive.
Action Steps:Be patient as processing times can range from 4 to 6 weeks.
Check your mailbox regularly for the arrival of your background check.
Reviewing Background Check Results:
Once you receive your background check, review it for any discrepancies and use it to fill out your applications or begin the expungement process.
Contacting an Expungement Attorney if Needed
If discrepancies are found or if arrests without convictions are listed, contact an expungement attorney to help clear your arrest record.
Are there alternative methods to obtain my record?
Absolutely, there exist several alternatives to procure a California criminal background check. One such method is to visit the courthouse where your case was managed. Many Superior Courts in California, such as those in Orange County and San Bernardino County, provide access to a criminal case portal where you can retrieve the disposition paperwork related to your case.
What if I have an old case and the courthouse doesn’t have the records? Will this method still work?
Indeed. If your case is from a long time ago and the court doesn’t have your records, you will need to employ this method to uncover your history. Subsequently, this information can be used to inform the court about your case.
I was arrested for Domestic Violence, but the prosecutor rejected the case. I now need to complete an application for a license but don’t know the date of arrest. Will this method be helpful?
Certainly, there are instances where an individual might be arrested, but no charges are filed, commonly in domestic violence situations. In such scenarios, the case does exist, but the courthouse might not have a record of it. Under these circumstances, you will need to utilize this form to access your California criminal background check. Following this, you can engage an expungement attorney to expunge your arrest record.”