New to Background Checks? What to Ask for and Why.

[Phone rings]

Ann: “Cutting Edge, this is Ann.”

Customer: “I just bought a California Coffee franchise! I have 14 restaurants in Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada and Texas!”

Ann [wonders how their coffee is and why there isn’t one in California]: “That’s great! You are (ahem) background checking your workers?”

Customer [wonders if Ann dreams about background checks]: “The last guy that owned California Coffee didn’t. . .”

Gather ‘round, friends.

So, you find yourself with a multi-state, multi-store, 4,000-employee business and no one has done background checks there before. Or, maybe they ran what information they could find publicly in the state, or used an internet search site (check this out when you have 60 seconds

You’re exploring the brave, new territory of background checks with a business that never had the budget for it before. Is it necessary? To your knowledge—no one got sued or injured before. Maybe the risk isn’t there.

The risk is there.

The risk of negligent hiring is always there.

Professional background checks will cover you in a number of ways.

Things we recommend your background checks include that you may be missing:

  1. SSN Trace. This is going to ensure that the names and birthdates searched are correct. It will provide alias information (think former or maiden names). It will tell us if we need to look outside of Maricopa County because the address information tells us your applicant moved there from Dallas County in 2019. You can try all day, but if you don’t know your applicant’s names, aliases and prior addresses, you can’t be thorough and that can be dangerous, leading to unfound criminal records.
  2. Federal courts. Not something that is covered in most “do-it-yourself” background checks. In federal courts we regularly find drug trafficking charges (crossing the border, BATF), pornography charges (internet crimes), armed robbery (holding up a convenience store on federal land).
  3. National Criminal Database. Ours is the best in the business. It’s not a stand-alone product but gives us valuable information on records we may not have found otherwise.

When you talk with a prospective background check provider, be sure to ask about the above. Courts have held employers responsible for negligent hiring because they could have known their applicant was dangerous. Did you do everything you could to hire the best?

Need more information? Give us a call at (714) 587-9166 or drop an email to You know I’d love to talk about it.