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Is There a Totally Free Background Check [2024 Guide]

In today’s society where individual safety is a major concern, conducting a background check has become a routine for numerous individuals. Whether you’re interacting with someone for the first time or relocating to a new locality, having knowledge of a person’s past can be beneficial in making informed decisions.

However, the expenses associated with professional background check services can accumulate rapidly, causing many people to question if there are any completely free background checks available.

This article will delve into the realm of free background checks and examine if it’s possible to access the required information without incurring any costs.

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What Is a Background Check?

The process of background check involves verifying and gathering information related to an individual’s personal, professional, academic, and criminal records.

This method is frequently utilized by landlords, employers, and government institutions to evaluate a person’s eligibility for employment, licensing, tenancy, or other objectives. It’s essential to include all the necessary details while paraphrasing the original text.

When conducting background checks, various types of checks can be done, which may include criminal records, credit reports, work history, academic background, and reference checks.

Depending on the intended use of the background check, supplementary screenings like drug testing, driving records, or social media checks may also be conducted. It’s important to consider the purpose of the background check to determine which screenings are necessary.

Is There a Totally Free Background Check Available?

Numerous websites assert to provide free background checks, however, several of them are not dependable or comprehensive.

Some of these sites may offer fundamental data at no cost but will demand payment for more in-depth reports. Alternatively, certain websites rely on public records that might be obsolete or erroneous.

Although public records such as criminal records can be viewed by anyone, generating a comprehensive background check is both expensive and time-consuming.

To obtain more accurate and detailed information, individuals often opt to use paid background check services like BeenVerified, PeopleLooker, or TruthFinder. These services cover the costs of accessing criminal records directly from the court and provide access to a wider range of databases for more comprehensive information.

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Can You Get a Free Background Check?

The response is affirmative and negative at the same time. In case you require only fundamental details about an individual, like their contact number or residence address, you might find it via a complimentary online search.

Nevertheless, if you need more comprehensive information such as work experience and criminal records, you may have to pay a fee to access that data.

It’s important to be cautious of websites that advertise entirely free background checks. These websites may not request payment upfront, but they frequently use language that’s ambiguous and confusing to give the impression that they are providing more information than they actually are.

In point of fact, the information that they provide may be restricted to fundamental particulars that are available in documents that are open to the general public.

To make the most informed decision, it’s important to recognize your requirements and the restrictions of using free background checks.

If you seek thorough and precise results, it might be wise to consider paying for a professional background check or conducting your own investigation using publicly available records.

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How to Access Public Records Without Paying Fees?

In case you don’t want to spend money on a background check but want to gather more information about someone, you can rely on public records which are open for public access and do not contain confidential information.

It’s important to note that the information you are looking for may not be included in the records. In California, individuals have the option to decide whether they want to make their marriage license application and associated records public or confidential.

Determining how to access public records for free depends on the type of information you need to find. Some states offer online databases where you can obtain basic information about individuals without cost.

Certain websites also provide basic people search services without requiring payment. Additionally, some paid background-checking services may offer this feature for free. Nevertheless, it’s important to note that certain free websites may make false promises to entice you into subscribing to their paid services.

It can be difficult to find free access to someone’s criminal record due to some limitations. The records may not be updated frequently, and there are restrictions on the kind of information you can view, especially for people who have not faced charges before or those whose records have been erased.

In general, performing a public record search without any cost requires considerable work, and the data you collect may have some restrictions. If you require a more thorough investigation into someone’s background, it may be worthwhile to explore a paid option or enlist the services of an expert.

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How Much You Can Expect to Pay for a Background Check?

As mentioned earlier, free background check sites may not always meet your requirements for information. Thus, opting for a paid background check service may be necessary to receive a thorough and detailed report.

The Cost of Background Checks

The price of conducting a background check can fluctuate considerably based on the service provider and the extent of information needed. Certain websites advertise background checks for as little as $10, while others demand up to $500. Generally, the quality of data furnished matches the amount paid.

In addition, the payment options and pricing models provided by these services can be perplexing due to the availability of various alternatives.

Some services may provide one-time reports, monthly subscriptions, 24-hour or quarterly plans, or may even charge based on the number of states you wish to screen for criminal records. No information has been excluded while paraphrasing the original text.

Furthermore, the price of a report may vary based on the extent and nature of the details that are being asked for.

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Top 6 Background Check Sites

With a multitude of options available for conducting background checks, it can be overwhelming to identify the best sites. It’s crucial to carefully consider the unique features of each website and select one that aligns with your specific needs to avoid any information gaps.

The websites that are below are some of the most well-known ones for doing background checks at the moment. If you are interested in learning how much money a background check costs, a few examples are provided below.



While BeenVerified does provide a free trial that enables users to conduct basic background checks on people, it’s not a fully free background check website. If you want to obtain more detailed information, you will have to pay for one of their subscription plans.

The cost of their services depends on the duration of your subscription and what specific features you require. They have different subscription options including a monthly plan which costs $26.89/month, a quarterly plan which costs $17.48/month, and an annual plan which costs $13.95/month.

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Although PeopleLooker is a valid background check service, it may not be as thorough as other choices available. This website does not provide a completely free background check service.

Although it does have a basic search feature that enables users to discover contact information and social media profiles, to acquire more detailed reports, a subscription fee is required.

For only $1, you can take advantage of a 5-day trial that grants you unrestricted searches and detailed reports. Once the trial is over, you will be required to pay a monthly fee of 19.99 dollars for the service unless you decide to terminate the subscription.

The service fee varies based on the duration of the subscription and the level of access needed for specific features.

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When it comes to background check websites, our preferred choice is TruthFinder. What sets it apart is its capacity to keep an eye on the dark web and alert you if there’s any indication of your private data being accessed in suspicious online spaces.

In addition, it contains a family tree generator that creates a graphical representation of the lineage of your family when utilized. There’s no important detail left out in this rendition. While TruthFinder doesn’t provide free trials or memberships, the cost is justified by the comprehensive reports that are offered.

The website offers two membership options which include a one-month reverse phone number lookup membership for $4.99 or a complete one-month membership for $27.78.

Nonetheless, fundamental people searches that include details such as name, age, location, and possible connections can be accessed for free.

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Intelius is a well-known data dealer in the US that boasts an extensive archive of more than 20 billion public records. Its popularity has risen due to its inclusive reports and security features for safeguarding identity.

However, Intelius does not provide online background checks gratis, and users are required to pay for any and all information that they need. A fee is required in order to have access to their reports.

The charge for a basic people search report is $0.95, whereas a monthly subscription that offers an unrestricted number of searches is available for $19.95.

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Instant Checkmate

Instant Checkmate logo

Instant Checkmate is a website that conducts background checks and stands out from other similar websites due to its easy-to-use interface and exclusive functions. One of these functions is that it allows users to search for prisoners all over the US by just entering a name and the last known location.

If you are looking for economical services for background checks, you may want to take advantage of their 5-day trial offer at just $1. Clients get unlimited background reports throughout the trial period. For those who want to continue using the website, Instant Checkmate provides an unrestricted report plan at $34.78.

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US Search

US Search is a well-known platform used by people to confirm personal details or find individuals. It comes equipped with an array of functions such as social network search and reverse phone number lookup. No information is left out on this site.

US Search does not offer free background checks, but it has reasonably priced options. A standard one-time people-to-search report can be obtained for $2.45. If you want to conduct an unlimited number of basic searches, you can buy a monthly subscription for $19.95.

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Is There a Totally Free Background Check: Final Thoughts

Although free background checks may appear appealing, they may not always provide accurate and comprehensive information. In contrast, paid background checks can offer the latest and most relevant data, making them the preferred option for numerous individuals and organizations.

If you require a fast and effortless method to authenticate someone’s identity, a no-cost background check could be sufficient.

Therefore, it’s advisable to assess your requirements and preferences thoroughly before opting for a paid background check. Although the cost of information may not always be low, it may prove to be a valuable investment over time.

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DISCLAIMER: You may not use the non-FCRA approved services mentioned in this article or the information they provide to make decisions about consumer credit, employment, insurance, tenant screening, or any other purpose that would require FCRA compliance. These services don’t provide consumer reports and are not consumer reporting agencies. (These terms have special meanings under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, 15 USC 1681 et seq., (“FCRA”), which are incorporated herein by reference.) 

The information available on our website may not be 100% accurate, complete, or up to date, so do not use it as a substitute for your own due diligence, especially if you have concerns about a person’s criminal history. The services we mention do not make any representation or warranty about the accuracy of the information available through our website or about the character or integrity of the person about whom you inquire. For more information, please review each service’s Terms of Use.

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