Public Free Access To California Arrest Records


The central repository for California Arrest Records is the state’s Department of Justice, Office of the Attorney General. The department is responsible for maintaining and updating the state’s criminal database. It is also responsible for accepting or rejecting requests for criminal records.

Members of the general public are granted access to criminal records because they are deemed as part of the public domain. There are guidelines that are strictly implemented by the department for the granting of the record. For example, you can access your own criminal records, if there is any, but you can only use it for checking its accuracy, for informational purposes, or if it is required by the presiding judge that is hearing your case. Access to other people’s records is allowed but only a few people are given permission to get their hands on a full record. Only the basic pieces of information of a record such as the name of offender, nature of offense, and time and place where it was committed, amongst others, are disclosed to the general public.

To access your own records, download the Live Scan Form from the database of the Department of Justice. The form comes with the ‘Claim of Alleged Inacuracy or Incompleteness’ form which you can use if you want something changed or updated from the information included on your record. Supply all the required details by typing them online before you print it. Look for the part in the form where it asks for the type of application you want and check ‘Record Review’. Also write the ‘Record Review’ on the ‘Reason for Application’ line. If the custodian of the records sees any reason to not grant you access to the records, he or she can reject your request.

After completing the form, get your fingerprints scanned at any Live Scan site. You can head to the local polide department or to a sheriff’s office and get scanned there if they offer such service. There is a fee for the fingerprint scan, which varies depending on where you had it done. When you are done with that, submit the form to the Department of Justice, along with the fingerprint scan and the fee for processing criminal records which is $25.

Requesting the records of other people is allowed but there are stricter guidelines. You need to have the consent of the owner of the record or authorization from the court to do so. Employers, landlords, and parents are allowed access if they want to check the background of job applicants, tenants, and nannies, respectively. Individuals who are about to enter marriage are also given access if they want check the criminal history of their partnet. Members of the law enforcement agency are also allowed if necessary for an investigation. The records are to be used for informational purposes only or as a supporting document in a legal proceeding. Anyone who uses the records for purposes not aforementioned will be punished by law.

Criminal Records California can also be accessed from online service providers. There are a number of service providers that specialize in maintaining and providing public records such as criminal records. Since the Internet is home to a ton of information, it is wise to run a quick background check on the service providers you are planning on using so you can get a better idea if they are a legit source or not. All you need to start a search is the full name of the owner of the record you want to obtain. Of course, you need to supply additional information if you want to narrow down the search results and have a better chance of locating the exact record.