Chicago is a big city. Within this big city are millions of residents, each with their own unique past. You meet countless numbers of these people every day. You meet them at job interviews, you meet them at coffee shops, you meet them at bars and you meet hem when you're looking for someone to take care of a service in your home.

With such a large population, there are times when it's important to know more about an individual's past. When you do, you need to perform Chicago background checks.

What Are Chicago Background Checks Used For?

These background checks are based on Chicago public records. These records are collected by state and local governments and made available to the public in the interests of government transparency and public safety. Nearly every type of information collected by city and state governments is placed in public record, with the exception of any data that could be easily abused, such as the social security number of an individual.

Normally Chicago public records are more difficult to obtain. Legally requesting them is fairly easy. You simply need to go to public records office and fill out a request form. Yet in terms of practicality, obtaining these records through the government is more difficult. You need to know exactly what you're looking for, request the data, wait for the information to be delivered, etc. The entire process still takes a few days, possibly longer, and there is always a chance you are missing important data points that you forgot to requisition.

Luckily, many websites and companies have made accessing Chicago public records easier for individuals and businesses. One of the main benefits of public records is that there are no laws about what the data can be used for or how much of it can be accessed. So companies have requested nearly all of the public records of every individual in the city of Chicago. They have then taken that information and placed it in easily searchable online databases that make performing Chicago background checks considerably easier. All a user needs to do is know the first name of the applicant, perform a search, and get a report on the person they're looking for.

The convenience of performing these background checks have saved companies and individuals time and effort in finding out about the backgrounds of the people they need to research. Both businesses and individuals use this data to make decisions about those they meet. Businesses use Chicago background checks for:

  • Hiring Truthful Applicants - Resumes do not have fact checkers so these background checks give companies the information they need on those that apply to positions within the company.
  • Legal Purposes - There are several legal reasons that a company may need to perform a background check. One of the most common reasons is to find out about legal working status, as well as avoiding lawsuits related to negligent hiring.
  • Criminal History Check - Businesses need to know that the people they hire can be trusted, both with customer information and with the products in the store. Chicago criminal records will also show the company the criminal history of an applicant, giving them an idea of their character.

Businesses have long been the most common users of background checks in the past, but individuals now also have greater access to background checks, and often perform these checks themselves. Some of these reasons include:

  • Personal Background Check - It's often important for people to find out what shows up on their own background check in order to know what other people are seeing. It's possible for government data to be mistaken, especially if a file was put under the wrong name or if your identity was stolen.
  • Relationship Background Checks - Both in personal and romantic relationships, a background check may be a good idea. You spend time regularly with your friends and relationship partners, and these checks help you find out who is being truthful about their backgrounds.
  • Personal Business - When you hire someone as a plumber, a babysitter, a house sitter, etc., you need to know that the person you're letting into your home can be trusted. These searches can give you reports on those individuals, so that you can make the best decisions about who you allow near your home and family.

Many individuals also use these Chicago background checks for nothing more than curiosity. You can find out the estimated home value of someone, their marital status, and other pieces of data that may be of interest. It's not uncommon to perform a search simply because a name pops in your head. Background checks are completely anonymous, allowing you to search for anyone that interests you, regardless of the cause of your interest.

Searching Through Chicago Criminal Records

One of the greatest benefits of these background checks is the ability to research through criminal records of those living in the city. Often some data is omitted - for example, current suspects in a criminal investigation may not yet have a criminal record, and thus won't yet have a criminal record. However, those with a criminal past may show up in the search, giving you the opportunity to get an idea of whether or not it is safe to allow certain people in and around your home and family.

Searching Through Chicago Public Records

Regardless of the reason for your curiosity, anyone can search through these public records at any time, without requiring permission from the person they're searching for. These data gives you the opportunity to get to know the background of those around you.

While in most cases the search may not turn up anything interesting, finding a person is quick and easy, so there is no downside to performing the search when you are curious. Rather than leave your decisions about another person up to chance, these background checks give you the opportunity to get the data that will help make your decision more informed, so that you can make the right call about those you associate with.