Background checks the good, bad and ugly.

Posted by Leticia, 12 May 06

Remember when a background check was something the government did to see if you were a spy? And when it came to dating all we really wanted to know was what's your sign? Boy, have we come a long way! How safe are you dating on the internet? Is he or she all that they claim to be? People often say to follow your gut. What if you can't tell the difference between instinct and indigestion? Where can you go for a little professional help in getting the scoop on Mr or Miss Maybe?

I often joke than if only I was born rich, I would have avoided that one REALLY bad mistake of a relationship that I had in my youth. See, I would have been able to afford a private detective to investigate him and I would have run in the opposite direction. Well, with technology being what it is today, we can all afford to do a little detective work on potential suitors. Did you know that there are websites that offer "security in knowing"? Whether it's a personal or business relationship, there are sites that compile background checks on anyone and everyone. Sometimes all you need to know is a name and location of that person. Of course the more you know, the more they promise they can find. Here are a few services available in finding out more about Mr/Miss Maybe:

Criminal records check for the past seven years

Your perfect partner could be online right now...

What are you looking for?

Criminal records check on any recent alias (alternate name)

Nationwide and international warrant search on your subject's name and any aliases found

Civil litigation record (Has he/she sued anyone? Or been sued or divorced? DUI Check (Has subject been arrested for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol?)

Marriage license search

Child Support (Is he/she required to pay child support?)

Employment verification

Education verification

Corporate affiliations

Now, just like prescription drugs there are some ugly side effects to peeping, spying and looking for stuff. My mama use to tell me, if you go looking for something, you usually find it. The question then becomes what do you do with that information? How do you know if your "Danny Doe" is the same guy with three kids and four baby mamas in five different states with a bankruptcy and no driver's license? Or what's worse, what if the search comes up clean? But, he really wasn't. Perhaps you forgot to put in the middle initial or you don't have his real name to begin with?

I guess the best advice is to proceed with caution. Don't take everything at face value. But, don't be afraid to trust your instincts. Also, from the other side, do a search on yourself and see if the information is true. Be your own detective. Sometimes words on paper don't give the full story.

How would you feel if you used information that you received to end a relationship that was healthy and positive only to learn that your information was tainted or not complete? For example, I know someone that was divorced when her daughter was still an infant. By the time the child had reached her teens, there was still no love interest in her life. She met a man through mutual friends. Everyone thought highly of him. He seemed perfect for her. They dated for over a year and talked about marriage. On a whim, she did an on-line background check and found something very devastating. He had been charged with indecent liberties with a minor. She broke it off immediately, never asking any questions, she refused his calls. Many years later, after he married someone else, she learned that when he was in high school, he was in love with a girl; whose family didn't want them together. They were going to run off and elope as soon as she turned 18. Her father called police and had him arrested. She never asked and he never got a chance to explain. Use the check as a tool to discuss issues with your potential mate not to pass judgment and convict.

Responses to "Background checks the good, bad and ugly."

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  1.   2ute4u says:
    Posted: 21 Jan 08

    Well said...there are a lot of pedophilas going rampant on the internet manipulating unsuspecting women in order to get closer to their children ,so of course I am leery and rather extremely protective of myhome and family...thnx

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  2. Posted: 11 Mar 07

    Yes..good article and some good points----of course background checks only do so much anyways...If a person has the right higher connections...most anything can be covered up...I mean for real...seems some truth serum or a damn good amount of alcohol might get some tight lips to talk...!!!-----either you--you get what you pay for!!

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  3. Posted: 08 Jan 07

    some background ckecks have been good bad and ugly.

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  4.   unme23 says:
    Posted: 22 Dec 06

    some things you need to find out, and other things you dont.

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  5.   Cocokisses says:
    Posted: 18 Dec 06

    There are so many dishonest folks out there, so better to be safe than sorry. Protect yourself and do that background check!

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  6. Posted: 16 Dec 06

    Nothing wrong with a little education

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  7.   UNME23 says:
    Posted: 14 Dec 06

    so far they all have been bad

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  8.   nehuskerfan says:
    Posted: 08 Dec 06

    Very interesting!

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  9.   Natural72 says:
    Posted: 26 Nov 06

    I also agree that you have to trust you instincts. If something feels wrong, it usually is wrong.

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  10.   gms77 says:
    Posted: 24 Nov 06

    gREAT ARTICLE NEVER LOOKED AT IT THIS WAY!

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  11. Posted: 24 Nov 06

    you can never be to safe.

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  12.   aantonio says:
    Posted: 13 Nov 06

    When meeting someone online, it is important that we take our time to get to know the person. There are some untrusting people out there, but at the same time there are very genuine people also. Follow your heart when meetig someone online, but at the same time also use your common sense

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  13. Posted: 13 Nov 06

    There can be so much deceit this is a must.

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  14.   Kara says:
    Posted: 10 Nov 06

    I did a check of sorts on a guy who told me he was divorcing, and found out that he wasn't. That saved me a lot of further heartache. There was another guy I *should* have run a check on, but never did. My gut always told me he was lying about a bunch of little things, but I thought he was just insecure and trying to impress. It was only later that I realized that lying was a way of life for him, and he was lying about *everything*, both little and big. No more liars for me. I'd rather face an unpleasant truth right away than find out about a pack of lies down the line. I wouldn't mind if a guy did, say, a premarital background check on me, and I would do one on him. I would appreciate that he wanted to make absolutely sure he was making the right decision before jumping in. I'd respect that.

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  15.   arbw4you says:
    Posted: 05 Nov 06

    I don't know how I would feel if I found out a background check was ran on me. I guess it would make me feel I couldn't trust the person that couldn't trust me. I think unless the person gave you reason for doing it like saying " I went to prison twice, but I can't talk about it now, I'll tell you later" then a back ground check is screaming to be done. Or just drop them right there, which ever makes you safe.

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  16.   euroecuboy says:
    Posted: 02 Nov 06

    a lover should have have a problem if their other behalf does a background check on them. if you got nothing to hide i guess

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  17.   Sweetheart says:
    Posted: 14 Oct 06

    I dont think I would ever run a background check on someone unless I didnt trust them, but if I didnt trust them then there was no point for a relationship!

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  18.   Ann says:
    Posted: 13 Oct 06

    Love is blind, so is the desire to be loved. Do the check.

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  19.   bombtongue says:
    Posted: 13 Oct 06

    This is an great topic!! I myself did a check on my man, after informing him of my intention's and seekin his reaction as to my reason's for doing a search. He was a little puzzled but encouraging and it helped that he was so willing to have me check him out!!!

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  20.   JADE74 says:
    Posted: 13 Oct 06

    I do many background checks as part of my job.Its good to know who you are associating with.

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  21.   yoby says:
    Posted: 12 Oct 06

    this sounds like 1984!!!!

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  22.   euroecuboy says:
    Posted: 27 Sep 06

    so whatever happened to privacy that america talks about all the time

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  23.   romeoluvs says:
    Posted: 23 Sep 06

    A real good article. Poeple should check out all the details before getting into any relationship.

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  24.   Fala says:
    Posted: 22 Sep 06

    It doesn't hurt to know who you're really dealing with, but you should start by just asking that person directly. If they hesitate or aren't forthcoming or if your gut feeling tells you something's not quite right, then you should hire the pros.

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  25.   embraceme says:
    Posted: 19 Sep 06

    This is why I tell people to look at the heart of a person.. You never know who you dealing with online... I could be a crazy woman as far as you might think.. hmmmm well ok i am but .. Listen to this article people and date safe...

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  26.   TrueHarmony says:
    Posted: 19 Sep 06

    Wow. This is an eye-opening article. There is a lot to think about when internet dating.

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  27.   mossimo36 says:
    Posted: 14 Sep 06

    Good article...something to think about for sure..I've never considered a background check on someone, but will if the need arises.

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  28.   xina03 says:
    Posted: 12 Sep 06

    I am asking myself the same question...is it safe to e-mail or reply to people online.When you really think about it when you go to a bar and you meet a new guy it's the same if you had met him online because you don't have no idea who he is.....you got to find out on your own

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  29.   Carla says:
    Posted: 12 Sep 06

    The way I feel today during these crazy dating times you just never know what type of person you are meeting either in person or online. I just try to use common sense......that is the best way

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  30.   marquez097 says:
    Posted: 09 Sep 06

    Sometimes you really need the low down on someone before you get involved. How many people are really trustworthy online? You never know...do a background check...find out what elementary school someone went to if you have to, just make sure for your safety.

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  31.   Natural72 says:
    Posted: 09 Sep 06

    In this day and time, you really never know what type of person you are meeting whether in person or online. I think just using common sense is the best policy.

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  32.   Dora says:
    Posted: 05 Sep 06

    Some things are better left unsaid until you get to know each other more.

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  33.   Coco says:
    Posted: 04 Sep 06

    You do what you need to do to make sure your guy brings as much to the table as you do, plus there are a lot of dishonest people out there!

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  34.   6wings says:
    Posted: 01 Sep 06

    Some things are better kept unknown to the other partner.

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