National background checks are often used as one of the last steps in the hiring process by employers. These tests are run and gather up all the public info that's available on a person and compile it into a report that allows them to verify it against the information you put down on your application.
So what can they find on these national background tests?
Pretty much anything public, including social security number verification, addresses, date of birth, criminal records, and even marriages and divorces. There are many companies that provide advanced background checks & pre-employment screening services.
These reports can not release any educational records as that is something that can only be released with the student's permission.
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Honestly, you have two choices. You can either just be honest on your application and put down everything that would be on your record, or you can prepare yourself by actually checking your own national background check.
There are many companies who have compiled all the available information for nearly everyone in the US and have them ready to go for a very small fee. Sometimes it's just better to know what may or may not show up so you can be prepared to talk about it in an interview.
Using these is also great for landlords who may be looking to rent out a home. These reports often include current or past neighbors which can be used as references. It also runs the name through the national gender registry to make sure they are not an offender, which can be very helpful.