Michigan background reports are issued by the State Police. Individuals or companies who need to order a background search in MI can do so either by name or fingerprints. The background screening method depends on the purpose of the background check.

Background searches are typically conducted by name, unless a state or federal statute requires differently (i.e. by fingerprints). Michigan background verification reports include the individual’s criminal history, including felonies, convictions or misdemeanors, but excluding traffic and tribal records, local misdemeanors, juvenile records and out-of-state criminal history.

How to Get a Michigan Background Check

To get a background check in Michigan, you must first determine the purpose of the background report, i.e. whether it is for employment, adoption, licensing or other purposes. The MI State Police offers two ways of obtaining a complete background check: by name or by fingerprints.

Agencies and companies are allowed to obtain a fingerprint background check only if there is a federal or state law that permits them to do so. Typically, these types of checks are requested for employment, licensing or volunteer placement purposes. Not all companies or employers are allowed to request a fingerprint background report in Michigan.

Ordering a Michigan Background Check Online

An online background check in Michigan is available through background check services or via the specialized MI State Police System. To order a background check online, you will need to have specific information about your subject, such as his or her full name and date of birth.

Note that the results may show overlaps if two or more individuals share the same personal information. MI online background checks do not include federal, traffic, tribal or juvenile records. Social Security Numbers are not searchable online.

Ordering a Michigan Background Check by Mail

Some types of background checks in Michigan can be completed by sending the appropriate application form to the MI State Police and its Criminal Justice Information Center.

All forms must be filled out completely and accurately and a fee must be enclosed for the issuance of a background report. Some of the instances where you may request a background screening by mail are:

  • An Agency User Agreement RI-087 (for agencies that need a criminal history for licensing or employment purposes).
  • A Livescan Fingerprint Request RI-030 (when the Noncriminal Justice Agency requests a federal and state fingerprint background verification).
  • An Incident Reporting Form CJIS-016 (when the NCJA has discovered a system security breach and needs to report the case to the State Police).
  • A Noncriminal Justice Agency Local Agency Security Officer Appointment CJIS-015 (when the NCJA needs to appoint an individual within the agency and provide authorized access to CHRI).

Who needs a Michigan background check?

The majority of background checks in Michigan are requested by employers, companies or government agencies that need to estimate the subjects before hiring them. Individuals who own rental properties are also frequent requestors of renter background checks in order to select the best tenant for their unit.

Other individuals that are subject to background screenings in MI are caregivers, managers, first responders and more.


Renter background checks in MI are requested by landlords who would like to assess a tenant’s personal and credit history and determine whether he or she is a good fit.

Typically, individuals with a decent credit report and a clean personal record have greater chances in being selected. This is so because landlords, through rental background reports gain reassurance that the tenant will pay the bills and rent on time and will keep the property in good condition.


Background checks for employment in Michigan are requested when a government agency, company or sole requestor intends to hire an individual for a certain position.

These types of MI background verifications are common during the employment process as employers need to gain insight into the candidate’s personal, professional and criminal profile and take this information into consideration when making a final hiring decision.

EMS/First Responders

First responders are subject to EMS background checks in Michigan as part of the employment process. Since working in emergency situations on a daily basis can be stressful, hospitals and other medical institutions perform medical background screenings to make sure that EMS workers are physically and mentally equipped to handle the job requirements.


Michigan full background checks for caregivers are requested when you need to hire an in-house caregiver to take care of a loved one. For these workers, performing complete background checks are the preferred choice since they will be assessed not only based on their criminal history, but also on their personal and professional history.


Full background checks in MI for job candidates applying for managerial positions are requested to estimate the subject’s personal and professional qualities, along with a criminal history check. Employers use these background reports in Michigan to calculate which candidate will be the best fit for the position.

When You Will Need a Background Check

There are many cases in which personal background checks or criminal history checks in Michigan are required. Although the availability of information stated on a background report is somewhat limited, there is still a sufficient amount of data to be assessed by the requestor. Some of the most common instances where background screenings are requested are:

  • Adoptions.
  • Buying firearms.
  • Hiring procedures by government agencies or companies.
  • Reviewing a subjects’ credit history.
  • Applying for a commercial driver’s license at your local MI DMV office.

The Difference Between Standard and Criminal Background Checks

Besides ordering a criminal history check in Michigan, requestors can also obtain full background checks for a subject. The main difference between performing a criminal record search and a personal background check is the type and amount of information available.

Thus, a criminal background report in MI will contain the arrests, felonies, misdemeanors and convictions of the subject, while a standard background verification will also contain the credit, personal and professional history of the individual.

Last updated on Thursday, October 15 2020.