Background Checks

Obtaining Criminal History Information

The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation is the central repository for criminal information for the state of North Carolina. The SBI offers the public and authorized agencies (qualified organizations) criminal background checks. Each has its own scope, rules, and process, so please review the following information carefully.
 

For Employers/Licensing Entities                                         

Criminal history record information (CHRI) maintained by the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation may only be released to entities having statutory authority to access that information or pursuant to a judicial order or subpoena.

North Carolina General Assembly defines the qualified agencies that are eligible to access criminal history record information. Access to CHRI for employment or licensing is permitted only if there is a state statute, federal mandate, or local ordinance of a North Carolina town, city or county that specifically authorizes a fingerprint-based criminal history record background check.

Every agency or organization authorized to access CHRI has a contract with the SBI known as an Access Agreement. This agreement outlines the responsibilities of  the SBI and the entity authorized to access CHRI.
Agencies or organizations seeking access to CHRI must submit a request in writing.

Please use this form to submit a request for access.

Questions concerning access to criminal history record information should be directed to the SBI Access Integrity Unit.

Phone: (919) 582-8631
E-Mail: AIUhelp@ncsbi.gov
Please use “Criminal History Record Information Access Inquiry” in the subject line.
Mail:
Access Integrity Unit - CIIS
NC State Bureau of Investigation 3320 Garner Road
P.O. Box 29500
Raleigh, NC 27626-0500


The public, agencies and/or organizations that DO NOT have statutory authority to access criminal history record information maintained by the NCSBI can check the following for more information:
 
The North Carolina Judicial Branch provides Court information and is public record. This information may be obtained by contacting the Clerk of Court in the county of residence. The fee of $25 is required. Visit www.nccourts.org and click on the General Public link. Scroll down to Additional Resources to find links to Obtaining Court Records, Criminal Background Check and to Request a Public Record.
 
The North Carolina Department of Public Safety maintains information about individuals who are serving or have served state prison sentences and those who are, or have been, on parole. To access the public offender search, go to: https://webapps.doc.state.nc.us/opi/offendersearch.do?method=view.

The North Carolina Sex Offender Registry maintains information about registered sex offenders.
To search for offenders near your address, by name and/city/zip, by latitude/longitude or by Sex Registration Number, go here:  http://sexoffender.ncsbi.gov/disclaimer.aspx
 
The National Sex Offender Search is now available online https://www.nsopw.gov/en

Personal Background Check                                               

State and Federal laws offer individuals the right to request a copy of their criminal history
record for the purposes of personal review and to ensure that it is complete and accurate.
 
North Carolina Fingerprint-based Check - $14
A fingerprint-based criminal history background check is available known as a Right to Review.
A North Carolina only check is conducted by the SBI and includes a response letter on SBI letterhead. For instructions and further information please use the following form to submit a request: Right to Review (PDF, 5 pages).

National Fingerprint-based Check - $18
For a national Identity History Summary Check, please use the following link: 
https://www.fbi.gov/services/cjis/identity-history-summary-checks
 
FBI CJIS Division – Summary Request 1000 Custer Hollow Road Clarksburg, WV 26306
304-625-5590
 

Background Check on Others                                              

North Carolina is a closed record state. Which means your criminal history background is protected and cannot be disseminated without your consent. Therefore, you cannot access criminal history record information on others.
 
The North Carolina Judicial Branch provides Court information and is public record. This information may be obtained by contacting the County Clerk of Court. The fee of $25 is required. Go to: www.nccourts.org and click on the General Public link. Scroll down to Additional Resources to find links to Obtaining Court Records, Criminal Background Check and to Request a Public Record.
 
The North Carolina Department of Public Safety maintains information about individuals who are serving or have served state prison sentences and those who are, or have been, on probation or parole.
To access the Public Offender Search, go to: https://webapps.doc.state.nc.us/opi/offendersearch.do?method=view.
 
The North Carolina State Sex Offender Registry maintains information about registered sex offenders.
To search for offenders near your address, by name and/city/zip, by latitude/longitude or by Sex Registration Number, go here:  http://sexoffender.ncsbi.gov/disclaimer.aspx
 
National Sex Offender Search is now available online https://www.nsopw.gov/en

The information is also available online through different vendors. Name-based public record checks and online vendors providing the information are not associated with the State Bureau of Investigation. Please be aware that Name-based background checks are NOT as accurate as fingerprint-based background checks.
 
There are also many private companies that buy North Carolina court information and furnish it online.