Criminal History Background Check Requirement

Printer Friendly Version

Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) guidelines requires applicants to complete a criminal history background check AFTER they have submitted their application. Applicants who paid online in BreEZe can complete their criminal history background check upon payment of application fee. Applicants who mailed paper applications with payments made by personal check should wait until the checks have been cashed by the Department of Consumer Affairs. Applicants who mailed paper applications with a money order or cashier check should wait approximately 5 business days until they complete their criminal history background check. Applicants who submitted paper applications in-person with a cash payment should wait approximately 2 business days until they complete their criminal history background check.

All requests from the Bureau must be submitted to the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the (FBI) either by Live Scan or through the submission of a ten-print (i.e. hard card) applicant fingerprint card. Previously processed submissions, fingerprint cards, or photocopies of fingerprint impressions are not acceptable. Applicants who are California residents are encouraged to complete a Live Scan for faster processing times. Applicants who live outside of California may submit fingerprint “hard cards”. The differences between the two methods is explained below.

Completion of a criminal history background check requires the submission of fingerprint processing fees that are established by the Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Additionally, applicants completing a Live Scan may be required to pay a Live Scan Operator fee that is determined by the company conducting the Live Scan. The fees are subject to change without notice.

Live Scan

Live Scan is a system for the electronic submission of fingerprints and the subsequent automated background checks and responses. Applicants living within the State of California and who are required to complete a criminal history background check may complete a Live Scan by following the steps below:

1. Locate the correct Live Scan form: Criminal history background checks are specific to an applicant's license type. See the table below for a list of all available Live Scan forms. Please note, the Bureau does not supply copies of Live Scan forms.

IMPORTANT: A Firearms Permit cannot be associated with a Private Investigator or Alarm Company Operator license organized as a corporation or Limited Liability Company (LLC) or a Private Patrol Operator license organized as a corporation.

License Type

Live Scan Form

Alarm Company Employee (ACE)

Alarm Agent

Alarm Company Employee with Firearms Permit (ACE & FQ)

Alarm Agent w/Firearm

Alarm Company Operator Qualified Manager with Firearms Permit (ACQ & FQ)

Alarm Company Operator with Firearms Permit (ACO & FQ)

Alarm Company Operator (ACO)

Alarm Co Lic

Alarm Company Operator Qualified Manager (ACQ)

Locksmith Company (LCO)

Locksmith

Locksmith Employee (LOC)

Private Investigator (PI)

Private Investigator

Private Investigator with Firearms Permit (PI & FQ)

Priv Investigator w/Fire

Private Investigator Qualified Manager with Firearms Permit (PIQ & FQ)

Private Patrol Operator (PPO)

Private Patrol Opr/Per

Private Patrol Operator with Firearms Permit (PPO & FQ)

Private Patrol Opr/Per w/Fire

Private Patrol Operator Qualified Manager with Firearms Permit (PPQ & FQ)

Proprietary Private Security Officer (PSO)

Prop Sec Off 7583.9

Security Guard (G)

Security Guard

Security Guard with Firearms Permit (G & FQ)

Security Guard w/Firearm

Repossession Agency (RA)

Repossessor

Repossession Agency Qualified Manager (RAQ)

Repossession Agency Employee (RAE)

Training Facility- Baton (TFB)

Training Instructor

Training Facility- Firearms (TFF)

Training Instructor- Baton (TIB)

Training Instructor- Firearms (TIF)

2. Complete the Live Scan form: Complete all requested fields on the Live Scan form then make three copies of the completed form. Your name, date of birth, and social security number (SSN) written on the Live Scan form must be identical to that listed on your application . If the information does not match, the processing of your application will be delayed. To ensure prompt and accurate processing, the Bureau recommends typing your Live Scan form electronically on a computer or printing legibly.

3. Locate the Nearest Live Scan site: You can locate the nearest Live Scan site by visiting the Attorney General's website at https://oag.ca.gov/fingerprints/locations . The site allows you to search by county and offers users the ability to view the Live Scan Operator site fee, accepted payment options, and contact information.

4. Go to the nearest Live Scan site: With three copies of your completed Live Scan form, visit a Live Scan site and pay all applicable fees (see table below). The applicant is responsible for paying for all Live Scan fees at the time of service. The Live Scan Operator will electronically submit your fingerprints to the DOJ and FBI then write an Automated Transaction Identifier (ATI) number in the space provided at the bottom of the form. Keep a one copy of the completed Live Scan form with your ATI number for your records.

Live Scan Fees

License Type

Fee Name

Fee Amount

Any BSIS license type EXCEPT Firearms Permit

DOJ Fingerprint Fee

$32

FBI Fingerprint Fee

$17

Live Scan Site Fee (set by Live Scan Operator)

Varies

TOTAL

$49 + Live Scan Site Fee

Firearms Permit

DOJ Fingerprint Fee

$32

FBI Fingerprint Fee

$17

Firearms Eligibility

$38

Live Scan Site Fee (set by Live Scan Operator)

Varies

TOTAL

$87 + Live Scan Site Fee

5. Check Status of Your Live Scan: After completing the Live Scan, you can check on the status by visiting https://applicantstatus.doj.ca.gov/ . Please note, to check on the status you must have your ATI number and your date of birth. To avoid longer wait times, only contact the Bureau if the DOJ's website states "California/FBI responses were sent to the agency," but you have not yet received your license in the mail.

Fingerprint Hard Cards

If you live outside of California and cannot access a Live Scan site in this State, you need to complete your criminal history background check using the hard card fingerprint method. As the submitted hard cards are manually reviewed by FBI and DOJ staff, the minimum processing time is 8-12 weeks. Follow the steps below to complete the hard card fingerprint method:

1. Locate a law enforcement agency (LEA) to complete fingerprint hard cards: Contact your local police or Sheriff's Department to inquire about having your fingerprints rolled.

2. Complete TWO fingerprint hard cards (FD-258): Applicants must submit two hard cards to the Bureau- one for the FBI and one for the DOJ. Complete the following fields:

  • Signature of Person Fingerprinted: The applicant must sign their name in the space provided.
  • Residence of Person Fingerprinted: The applicant must write their residence address.
  • Employer and Address: Write the name of your employer, if applicable, and their address.
  • First, Middle, and Last Name ("NAM"): Write the name listed on your application.
  • Social Security Number ("SSN"): Write your SSN in the space provided.
  • Sex: Find the corresponding code located in the table below and write it in the space provided.
  • Race: Find the corresponding code located in the table below and write it in the space provided.
  • Height ("HGT."): Write your height in feet and inches.
  • Weight ("WGT."): Write your weight in pounds.
  • Eye Color ("EYES"): Find the corresponding code located in the table below and write it in the space provided.
  • Hair Color ("HAIR"): Find the corresponding code located in the table below and write it in the space provided.
  • Date of Birth ("DOB"): Write your DOB in the MM/DD/YYYY format.
  • Place of Birth ("POB"): Write the U.S. State, Territory (e.g. Guam, Puerto Rico), or country of birth. Use the correct abbreviation for foreign countries or correctly spell the name of the country. Do not list a county (e.g. Placer, Tuolumne) as a POB.

Fingerprint Hard Card Codes

Required Field

Description

Code

(to be written on hard card)

Sex

Female

F

Male

M

Race

Asian or Pacific Islander

A

Black

B

American Indian or Alaska Native

I

White

W

Eye Color

Black

BLK

Blue

BLU

Brown

BRO

Gray

GRY

Green

GRN

Hazel

HAZ

Hair Color

Bald

BLD

Black

BLK

Blonde (or strawberry)

BLN

Brown

BRO

Gray (or partially gray)

GRY

Red (or auburn)

RED

Sandy

SDY

White

WHI

3. Visit the LEA that agreed to complete your fingerprint hard cards: Take TWO hard cards with your completed personal information to the LEA that agreed to roll your fingerprints. Once the LEA has finished rolling your fingerprints, they will return the fingerprint card to you.

4. Submit hard cards and payment to the Bureau: After receiving the hard cards back from the LEA, you must submit your fingerprints to the Bureau by mail. Please note, the DOJ and FBI charge a fee for processing fingerprint cards, which must be made directly to the Bureau . All BSIS license types, with the exception of firearms permits, are $49. The DOJ-FBI fee for processing fingerprint cards for a BSIS firearms permit is $87. You have the option of paying for your fingerprint hard cards by mail or online.

Submit by Mail

If submitting by mail, you should include a copy of your application or application summary (if you applied online in BreEZe) to ensure proper and timely processing of your application, payment, and fingerprint hard cards. Please note, fingerprint hard cards will not be mailed to the DOJ or FBI for processing until the full fee payment has been received by the Bureau.

Mail your TWO fingerprint hard cards and fingerprint processing fee payment to:

Bureau of Security and Investigative Services
P.O. Box 989002
West Sacramento, CA 95798

Submit Online (Payment Only)

Applicants can pay for their fingerprint hard cards when they submit and pay for their online application in BreEZe. To pay online, you must select "Yes" when asked if you will be submitting hard card fingerprints. The fingerprint fee of $49 or $87 will automatically be added to the application fee amount and will be included in the total amount due when submitting your application. Once your application is submitted in BreEZe, an email containing your application and payment summary will be sent to the email address you provided when you created your BreEZe account. You must then submit a copy of the payment summary and fingerprint hard cards to the Bureau .

Mail your TWO fingerprint hard cards and copy of payment summary to:

Bureau of Security and Investigative Services
P.O. Box 989002
West Sacramento, CA 95798