What is a background check?
A background check is an investigation into an individual’s criminal record, employment history, driving record, education, finances, or other aspects of their personal history.
Background checks are often performed by an organization or company in order to screen a subject before a significant financial or legal agreement. However, individuals regularly perform background checks on themselves to make sure that the public information on them matches their personal records.
For more general information on background checks, consult our Background Checks FAQS page.
How do I run a criminal background check in Arkansas?
The Arkansas State Police has two systems for people who wish to run a criminal background check in the state. They are:
- The ARCH system for those performing a search for personal reasons
- The system for those mandated by law to perform the background check or have the signed consent of the subject of the search.
Arkansas Criminal History (ARCH) System
This system is for those who wish to perform a criminal history background check for personal reasons other than legally mandated ones. The search can be done by any person and signed consent of the subject of the search is not required.
Each name-based search costs $24 and is non-refundable. The payment can be made by debit or credit card. Once the name search is performed, the searcher is allowed to click and view a single result, and download and print the result if they wish.
Users will be charged a fee even if their search yields no results.
Click here to perform a search.
Legally Mandated Criminal Background Check
This search can be done using the Official State of Arkansas Online Criminal Background Check System and it is limited to:
- Authorized persons
- Persons with the signed consent of the subject of the search
To perform a search using the online system, one must first subscribe online with the Information Network of Arkansas (INA). After obtaining an online account, the price is $22 per name-based request.
However, those that do not have an online account can mail in a request by filling out and submitting the Arkansas Background Check Request Form along with a payment of $25 in the form of a check or money order made payable to the Arkansas State Police. The completed form and payment should be sent in an envelope to the following address:
Arkansas State Police
1 State Police Plaza Drive
Little Rock, AR 72209
For questions regarding the mailed-in request form, call the Arkansas State Police ID Bureau at 501-618-8500.
What can I do if my Arkansas criminal history record has someone else’s charges?
If your Arkansas criminal history record incorrectly displays the arrest of another person, you are allowed to challenge the record at no personal cost.
To do so, you must visit a law enforcement agency and be fingerprinted. Then, your fingerprints will be compared with those in the record. If your fingerprints do not match those on the arrest record, the record will be removed from your Arkansas criminal history.
How do I search Arkansas court records?
Individuals can use the AOC PUBLIC CourtConnect website provided by the Arkansas Administrative Office of the Courts to search for Arkansas court records.
Users can search for case records and judgments from:
- The Arkansas Supreme Court
- The Arkansas Court of Appeals
- Many county district and circuit courts. The full list of participating courts is available here.
Where can I find Arkansas driving records online?
You can view your Arkansas driving record online using the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration Online Driver Record Request System.
The cost is $11.50 for an insurance record and $13 for a commercial (CDL) record.
In order to view the record, you’ll need the following:
- An Arkansas driver license
- Your social security number
- A credit or debit card
- A printer
Click here to request your Arkansas driving record online.
How do I look up Arkansas vital records such as birth certificates and marriage licenses?
Vital records are records of important life events such as births, deaths, marriages, and divorces that are kept by government agencies and accessible upon request.
Vital records are not public records that can be viewed by anyone, but the subject(s) of the record and authorized family members can view them in-person or order copies through a number of means. Additionally, one or more vital records may be required to complete a background check.
The Arkansas Department of Health allows individuals to order copies of vital records online using the Vital Records Online Service. In addition to the cost of the record, you must pay a $5 processing fee and a $1.85 identity verification fee.
Available vital records include:
- birth certificates – $12 and $10 for additional copies
- death certificates – $10
- marriage records – $10
- divorce records – $10
Click here to place an order. Requests take between 1-2 weeks to be approved.
For more information, contact the Arkansas Department of Health at [email protected].
How do I search for a person’s sex offender status in Arkansas?
Those guilty of sex-related crimes or crimes against minors in Arkansas are required to register in the Arkansas Sex Offender Registry.
The Arkansas Sex Offender Registry is made available to the general public by the Arkansas Crime Information Center. You can search the registry by name, city, or area and sign up to receive email or phone notifications if a specific offender changes addresses.
Click here to search the Arkansas Sex Offender Registry.
How do I perform a credit history background check in Arkansas?
Performing a credit check in Arkansas follows the same process as in other states. A federal law known as the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) grants every American one free annual credit report each from the three main U.S. credit bureaus:
In order to obtain your free credit report from one of these three bureaus, you must provide the following information:
- Full name
- Date of birth
- Social security number