Do It Yourself Background Checks in South Florida


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Utilizing public record databases to find civil, criminal, or traffic violations in South Florida has become a bit easier with the release of an updated list of online resources. Locating and identifying civil litigation, criminal record or traffic infraction history is but a click away. Access to resources relating to inmates, those on probation, parole or community control, sex offenders or missing children, in addition to stolen property or vehicles, is readily available as well.

“In today’s society, comprehensive background checks are a necessity,” private investigator John Sinks of Comprehensive Investigative Solutions in Boca Raton told South Florida Reporter. “A background check is basically an investigative report on an individual. It typically includes a criminal history and credit check, educational credential verification, public records check, or any combination of reports.”

Suggested below are some of the free or low-cost options available when conducting background research in South Florida. In no way are they exhaustive and – according to Sinks – a professional investigator should be consulted when conducting more than a cursory search.

Basic background checks

Sex offenders

Wanted and missing persons

Jail and state prison inmates

Stolen property

  • Florida Crime Information Center – Search for information on whether a vehicle, vehicle parts, boats, license plates, decals, guns and other items were reported lost or stolen in Florida.
  • VINCheck – Search the National Insurance Crime Bureau database to see if a vehicle has been reported stolen.

“Pre-employment background checks are an important and necessary part of our hiring process,” Xavier Mitjavila, told South Florida Reporter. “There have been times that applicants have been less than truthful in disclosing background issues. After a cursory search, we engage a professional private investigator to complete the process in a more thorough fashion.”

As a nationally recognized credit repair and identity theft expert, Bill Lewis of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, is principal of William E. Lewis Jr. & Associates, a solutions based professional consulting firm specializing in the discriminating individual, business or governmental entity. 

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