Free Background Check Oregon to See All Records (Also Criminal)

A portrait of Background Check Records founder, Jayson Baxter.Written by Jayson Baxter

Background Checks | June 7, 2023

On the right is a man in a light blue shirt and dark blue pants holding a grey magnifying glass over a background check Oregon criminal history report that has Oregon public records on a screen and to the far left is a woman with black hair, blue jeans and yellow shoes.

To run a background check, Oregon public records can be searched through government directories, but if it’s for professional purposes such as for a job, licensing, a firearm, or to rent a property, searchers must go through the appropriate agency to remain compliant

No matter which route is taken, anyone can see all records on an individual such as if their marital status, if they have a warrant out for their arrest, are on parole, and also, criminal records highlighting any troubles they’ve had in the past.

To obtain these records, simply fill out the form to look into anyone’s past, or let us guide you on how to find public information on anyone, whether that’s through a local police agency, prison inmate searches, arrest record searched, or digging up court records.

Readers will also learn what shows up on various background checks, how to search government directories, how far back screenings go, the timeframe it takes, and Oregon laws that protect citizens against discrimination.

Free Oregon Background Check (Access Free or Low Cost Public Criminal Records in OR)

Accessing a person’s criminal history requires knowing where to look and making sure the channels used to obtain records follow employment background check laws by state statute and federal laws before they are used in making decisions for hiring, leasing or licensing.

Personal criminal history checks should also be conducted through official channels to ensure accuracy, and can be requested by the subject of the record or someone wishing to know more about a person in their life.

There are a number of agencies in Oregon that maintain criminal records, and many of these are available to the public for free or a small fee.

Criminal History Check Through The OR State Police

The official provider of a criminal background check, Oregon State Police provides information to individuals and businesses or agencies needing to know if someone has been convicted of a crime both in the state and nationally.

Searches can be either name-based (Open Record Request) or fingerprint-based (Copy Of Own Record Request) depending on the need of the person making the request. The price varies depending on the type of report, and Oregon State Police does provide fingerprinting services at its Salem headquarters building for a fee.1

Their address is:

Oregon State Police HQ
3565 Trelstad Avenue SE
Salem, Oregon 97317

A form with first name, last name, address, and email fields that's needed in order to access criminal history through the Oregon State Police.

Records can be requested online via the search portal, or can be requested through the mail by printing the required form and mailing it, along with the fee and fingerprint card, to:

Oregon State Police – Criminal Justice Information Service Division (Unit 11)
Post Office Box 4395
Portland, Oregon 97208-4395

Locate Oregon Criminal Records for Free Using Court Records

The Oregon Judicial Department has an online search portal to locate court calendars and court records free of charge. Court records can be searched using the defendant’s name, or by docket number if available.

An online criminal history search tool hosted by the Oregon Judicial Department and it can be searched by record number, first, middle, or last name.

Searches of a person’s Oregon criminal court cases shows the defendants full name and aliases, date of birth, information about the case such as court location, charges and level of charge (felony or misdemeanor), disposition in the case (guilty, not guilty, dismissed, dropped, or if the matter is still pending), and sentencing information as well as any fines or fees assessed.2

Since this is a name-based search, it is important to note that common names may return multiple hits or records, so you will need to make sure the record matches the person subject to the background check which can be done by comparing date of birth on the record to the date of birth of the potential employee, tenant or dating interest or other person relationship.

Free Public Record Check Using Oregon County Clerk Offices

Oregon is home to 36 counties, each with a clerk that is responsible for maintaining records on the residents of that county. The table below lists the County Clerk’s contact information for each county:

County Phone Number
Baker 541.523.8207
Benton 541.766.6831
Clackamas 503.655.8698
Clatsop 503.325-8511
Columbia 503.397-3796
Coos 541.396.7600
Crook 541.447.6553
Curry 541.247.3295
Deschutes 541.388.6549
Douglas 541.440.4325
Gilliam 541.351.9490
Grant 541.575.1675
Harney 541.573.6641
Hood River 541.386.4522
Jackson 541.774.6152
Jefferson 541.475.4451
Josephine 541.474.5240
Klamath 541.883.5134
Lake 541.947.6006
Lane 541.682.4321
Lincoln 541.265.4131
Linn 541.967.3831
Malheur 541.473.5151
Marion 503.588.5225
Morrow 541.676.5601
Multnomah 503.988.3326
Polk 503.623.9217
Sherman 541.565.3606
Tillamook 503.842.3402
Umatilla 541.276.7111
Union 541.963.1006
Wallowa 541.426.4543
Wasco 541.506.2530
Washington 503.846.8752
Wheeler 541.763.2374
Yamhill 503.434.75183

Free Oregon Criminal Background Check At Local County & City Police Departments

Another option for free criminal records searches includes local police departments and county sheriff’s offices for incident reports.

For example, a person can request a copy of an incident report from the Salem, Oregon Police Department by mailing the request to:

Salem Police Department Records Section
333 Division Street Northeast
Salem, Oregon 97301

Searches may also call 503.588.6144 or fax the request to 503.588.6329. There is a $15 fee for each police report requested.4

Sheriff’s offices maintain the jail in the county, and inmate rosters are usually available to the public free of charge.

Polk County Sheriff’s Office Jail makes its inmate roster available online, showing who is currently incarcerated, jail ID number, charges, court location, arresting agency, disposition (if case has been heard in court) and bail or bond if one has been issued.5

Locate Inmate Criminal Records For Free Through the Oregon Department of Corrections

Individuals can search criminal records for those who have been sentenced to prison or supervised probation through the Oregon Department of Corrections online portal using the inmate’s name.

A screenshot of the Oregon Department of Corrections inmate locator.

Information provided in search results includes charges, correctional facility w, admission date, projected release date, age, and a physical description of the offender. Results also include a mugshot of the offender.

Find Sex Offender Records With the Oregon Sex Offender Registry or the National Sex Offender Registry

Another method to search someone’s criminal history is to search the state or national sex offender registry. The Dru Sjodin National Sex Offender Registry provides information on sex offender nationwide, and searches can be conducted via name or geographic location.

When using this free search portal, searches can be narrowed down to Oregon for offenders who are residing in the state or those who had charges that originated in Oregon.

A screenshot of the Oregon sex offender registry that hosts data of sexual predators within the state and can be searched by name of vicinity.

The Oregon Sex Offender Registry only includes those considered Level 3 offenders. These are the persons deemed most likely to reoffend or present a danger to the public. To access the Oregon registry, individuals need to complete the captcha and agree to the terms and conditions of the website.

This will open a map of Oregon designating where registered offenders are located on the right-side of the screen, and a list of offenders on the left.

Clicking on an offender’s profile will reveal the person’s name, date of birth, age, gender, address, description, identifying marks (scars, tattoos), employment information, charges and conviction date or dates.6

Marriage Background Check OR: How To Check if Someone Is Married or Divorced in Oregon

The Oregon Department of Health and Human Services, Vital Records and Certificates is the go-to place for records of marriages and divorces in the state. There are multiple ways to request vital records.

Online requests are handled through VitalChek, the only government approved vendor for Oregon vital records. Marriage and divorce records through VitalChek include a fee of $43.25 per record requested.

Marriage and divorce records can also be requested via mail by submitting a request form along with a $25 fee to Oregon Vital Records, Post Office Box 14050, Portland Oregon 97293, via telephone by calling 888.896.4988 and paying a fee of $44.95, or in person by appointment at 800 Northeast Oregon St., Portland Oregon 97232 with a $28 fee.

Divorce records can also be accessed through the clerk of court’s office in the county where the action was filed and disposed of. Courts may impose a fee for printing hard copies of the records or a search fee.

These are some of the ways a person can conduct a background check in Oregon, and there are many reasons a person may be subject to a screening.

Reasons Background Checks Are Used in Oregon

There are a number of reasons for an Oregon background check including employment, licensure, tenant background check, volunteerism, and for personal reasons. When doing a background check, Oregon laws, along with national legislation, outline what can be searched and how the information can be used.

Official background checks, sometimes referred to as commercial background checks, are those that are often conducted for things such as an Oregon employment background check (pre-employment and continual background checks, including drug and alcohol screenings), screening criminal and credit history by landlords or property managers, licensing background checks, and screening volunteers (especially those volunteers that work with vulnerable populations).

The table below shows which agencies conduct background checks in Oregon and how those screenings are typically used.

Agency Information Why Screenings Are Conducted
Oregon State Police
  • Pre-employment Checks
  • Licensure Background Checks
  • Public Health and Safety
  • Positions Involving Vulnerable Populations
Oregon Department of Human Services
  • DHS Background Check
  • Contractors
  • Vendors
  • Subcontractors
  • Volunteers
  • Child Care Background Check
  • Social Workers
  • Foster Parents
  • Adoptive Parents
  • Group Home Workers
  • Respite Care Workers
  • Adult Facilities
Oregon Board of Psychology
  • Psychologists
  • Psychology Associates
  • Psychology Residents
Oregon Medical Board
  • Medical Doctor
  • Osteopathic Doctor
  • Podiatrists
  • Physician Assistants
  • Acupuncturists
Oregon Board of Nursing
  • Registered Nurses
  • Nursing Assistants
  • Licensed Practical Nurses
Oregon Health Authority
  • Art Therapists
  • Hearing Aid Agents
  • Athletic Trainers
  • Estheticians
  • Cosmetologists
  • Dental Assistants
  • Midwives
  • Electrologists
  • Body Art Practitioners
  • Dietitians
  • Genetic Counselors
  • Lactation Consultants
  • Music Therapists
  • Long-Term Care Workers
  • Respiratory Therapists
  • Polysomnographic Technicians
  • Sex Offender Treatment Providers
Oregon Department of Education
  • Principals
  • Assistant Principals
  • Teachers
  • Teacher Assistants
  • Volunteers
  • Support Staff (Guidance Counselors, Librarians, Cafeteria Staff, Housekeeping)
  • Bus Drivers

Background checks by these agencies are conducted to ensure the workers hired are not likely to present a danger to the populations served or the general public. These searches are in compliance with all state and federal laws regulating background checks.

Firearms Background Checks by The Oregon State Police

Licensed dealers must use the Firearms Instant Check System (Oregon FICS) when completing a firearms transaction. For those conducting a firearms background check, Oregon law requires a screening of all transactions, including those at gun and knife shows and transactions between private parties.

All FICS screenings are completed by the Oregon State Police, but only licensed dealers have access to the online portal for conducting background checks. All personal transactions must be initiated by the person selling the firearm by submitting the necessary forms to the Oregon State Police FICS division.7

Employment Background Checks by the Oregon State Police

Oregon background checks for employment purposes are also conducted by the state police. Through an open record request, employers can request a name-based search of an individual through the Oregon Computerized Criminal History Repository maintained by the Oregon State Police, Criminal Justice Information Services.

Fingerprint-based searches through the Oregon State Police for official use in employment decisions are called Regulatory Applicant Background Checks, and agencies must be in compliance with agency and applicant privacy laws outlined by the Privacy Act of 1974.

Oregon State Police partners with the FBI to complete fingerprint-based background checks. This is primarily used by agencies that require bulk background checks.

Name-Based Identity Verification Background Checks by County & City Agencies

Local law enforcement agencies can conduct named-based searches of individuals to verify the person’s identity when in question during a background check. For example, public records can be used to verify the name and determine who lives here in Salem, Oregon through the Marion County Clerk’s office. This is also how to find someone’s middle name, full name or last name.

Salem Police Department can also be a resource for a name-based identity verification background check, and is often the first stop for non-profit background checks.

Driving History Checks Through the Oregon Driver and Motor Vehicle Services (DMVS)

Individuals can access their own Oregon driving record online through the Driver and Motor Vehicle Services website. Information includes licensing history, motor vehicle accidents, traffic violations and how many points are currently against a person’s license

A motor vehicle record check that can requires name, DOB, zip code and SSN to look up someone's driving records.

Employers and agencies that require a driving history for a position can request a person’s driving record through the DMVS by completing an application and submitting it via mail to:

DMV Record Services
1905 Lana Ave. Northeast
Salem, Oregon 97314

Be sure to include the fee from the fee scheduled included on the form. Businesses can also set up a record inquiry account with the DMVS and make requests for records via fax at 503.588.0155.

What Is on a Background Check in Oregon? What Shows Up?

While the information can vary depending on the type of free background check, Oregon law does outline what can show up on the public record. Felony and misdemeanor convictions will show up on a person’s record indefinitely regardless of how long ago the matter was disposed of in court.

However, an open records request through the Oregon State Police will only show convictions and pending felony and misdemeanor charges from the 12-month period prior to the date of the request.

With a regulatory applicant background check, Oregon State Police do not limit the search to the previous 12 months, this is a comprehensive, fingerprint-based background check for purposes of employment, licensure, certifications, permits or volunteering that requires a more extensive screening.

Additionally, driving history will only show up on a routine background check when the speed is in excess of 30 miles per hour above the posted speed limit or the violation is another type of misdemeanor or felony offense such as driving under the influence or vehicular homicide.8

A detailed driving history check can be requested from the Oregon Driver and Motor Vehicle Services which includes infractions and accident reports.

A screenshot of a form from the Oregon DMV where residents can request their own driving record.

Credit history can also be on an Oregon background check for possible leasing contracts or for positions that have an annual salary of $75,000 or more, employment in a bank or credit union, positions where a credit check is required, or law enforcement or public safety positions.9

FRCA regulations limit a credit check to a seven year lookback period, so any credit history older than that will appear on a record check.

Do Warrants Show Up on Oregon Background Checks?

Can you pass a background check with a warrant in Oregon? Warrants typically do not appear on background checks in Oregon, but the underlying cause of the warrant can appear as a pending charge. Since most cases are not docketed until the warrant has been served.

However, it is unlikely anything surrounding it will show up on Level 1 background checks, and may not show up on a Level 2 background check. Warrants may appear on a Level 3 background check or a Level 4 background check in Oregon due to the extensive nature of the search.

Does Probation Show Up on Background Check?

Probation can show up on a person’s Oregon background check because it is part of the sentencing phase of a court hearing. Additionally, violations of probation can appear as a separate charge on a person’s background check.

Oregon: Background Check Disqualifying Offenses

While a criminal history by itself is not grounds for denying someone a position, there are certain disqualifying offenses that can be used to deny employment based on a conviction alone. These disqualifying offenses usually involve violent crimes that present a danger to the general public or specific populations that are deemed vulnerable.

Disqualifying offenses in Oregon are listed below:

  • Child abandonment
  • Aggravated animal abuse I and Animal abuse
  • Aggravated identity theft
  • Aggravated murder, Aggravated vehicular homicide, Criminally negligent homicide, Murder I and II
  • Aggravated theft I
  • Aggravated vehicular homicide
  • Arson I, II, and III
  • Burglary I and II
  • Trafficking a person under 18 years old, Trafficking in persons (involuntary solitude I and II)
  • Child neglect I
  • Coercion
  • Compelling a person into prostitution, Promotion prostitution
  • Cyber crimes
  • Contributing to sexual delinquency of a minor
  • Criminal mistreatment I and II
  • Criminal possession of a forged instrument I
  • Criminal possession of a forgery device
  • Drug Crimes
  • Child sexual abuse crimes including incest
  • Identity theft
  • Invasion of privacy I and II
  • Kidnapping I and II
  • Manslaughter I and II
  • Organized retail theft
  • Private and Public
  • Indecency
  • Rape I, II, and III, Sexual abuse I, II, and III
  • Robbery I and II
  • Beastiality
  • Sodomy I, II and III
  • Strangulation
  • Theft of services

Conviction for these offenses can automatically disqualify someone from employment or licensure, including volunteering for an agency or organization due to the risk to the public involved.10

How Far Back Do Background Checks Go in Oregon? How Many Years?

Open record requests are background checks that span the 12-month lookback period from the date of the request; however a regulatory applicant background check can span the person’s entire criminal history for convictions that have not been expunged or sealed.11

A 7 year background check, Oregon credit history, is the limit outlined by the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) which prohibits using older credit history to make decisions on hiring or leasing property.

Oregon Background Check Laws (Background Check: Oregon Laws & Statutes)

Oregon is a ban the box state meaning there are limits on when an employer can ask a person about their criminal history. Statute 659A.360 prohibits asking about a person’s criminal history on an application or making inquiry before the initial interview or a conditional job offer when no initial interview has been conducted.

Exceptions to the law include positions where a conviction alone would preclude someone from being hired such as law enforcement, corrections or public safety. Where federal law requires a background check, Oregon agencies can also inquire about criminal history before a conditional offer of employment is made.12

As stated earlier, FCRA limits inquiries into credit history to a seven-year lookback period, and credit history alone cannot be used to deny employment unless it is a position that requires a solid credit history such as banking or other financial institution positions.

Oregon background check laws are enforced by the Bureau of Labor and Industry and the Attorney General’s Office. Applicants can also reach out the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to file a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 when background information is used in a discriminatory manner.

Background Check Cost in Oregon: How Much Is it?

Criminal history checks through the Oregon State Police are $33 for personal record checks, and fingerprinting is $30. Regulatory checks are also $33 per record, and fingerprinting is an additional $13.25 to cover the nationwide search by the FBI. A volunteer background check carries an additional $11.25 for the FBI national search.

Motor vehicle searches vary from $1.50 to $12.50 per record depending on the nature of the search and the information requested.

Court copies can vary depending on the policy at the local clerk of court’s office, but typically are assessed on a price-per-page basis. Fees may also include an amount for the search.

Marriage background checks and divorce records can run anywhere from $25 to $44.95 depending on how the search is performed and how quickly the record is needed. Divorce records can also be searched for free at a public terminal at the clerk of court’s office where the case was heard.

Free searches include warrant searches at local police or sheriff’s offices that publish warrant lists, inmate rosters at the local jails or the state correctional facilities, sex offender registry searches and tax records at the county clerk’s office.

How Long Does a Background Check Take in Oregon? Is There an Oregon Background Check Time Limit?

For a background check Oregon State Police have a 7 to 10 business day window to complete a screening and send the report to the requesting party. FBI fingerprint searches can take 3 to 5 business days to complete for online requests, and 2 to 4 weeks for mail-in requests.

A screenshot of the processing time of an FBI background check which is 3-5 days online, and 14-28 days if done by mail.

Locating Oregon background check information can be done quickly and in compliance with state and federal laws through the agencies outlined in this free guide. When compiling a background check, Oregon State Police is the first step in learning more about a potential candidate for employment, housing or personal involvement.

Frequently Asked Questions

When Do Driving Tickets or Moving Violations Go on Background Checks in Oregon?

Driving offenses that are misdemeanor or felony charges such as DUI or driving on a revoked license can appear on an Oregon background check. Do traffic violations show up on a criminal background check? They can if they are misdemeanor or felony convictions.

Do Speeding Tickets Show Up on Oregon Background Checks?

When speeding is in excess of 30 miles per hour over the posted limit, it becomes a criminal offense and can appear on a background check in Oregon.

Are Misdemeanors Revealed on Background Checks in Oregon?

Unless the charges or convictions have been expunged or sealed, they can and do show up on a background check, Oregon-state wide.

Do Felonies Go on Oregon Background Checks?

Felony charges and convictions that have not been sealed or expunged appear on an Oregon background check.

Can a Juvenile Record Be Used Against You In Oregon?

Juvenile records are sealed from the public and will not appear on a background check; therefore, they cannot be used against you for employment or housing considerations.


Oregon State Police : Criminal History Record Checks : Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS) : State of Oregon. (n.d.). Retrieved November 7, 2022, from <>

Smart Search. (2022). Oregon Judicial Department. Retrieved November 7, 2022, from <>

Oregon Counties : State of Oregon. (n.d.). Retrieved November 7, 2022, from <>

Request Police Records. (n.d.). Salem, Oregon. Retrieved November 7, 2022, from <>

Inmate Roster. (2022, November 7). Polk County Sheriff’s Office. Retrieved November 7, 2022, from <>

Oregon Sex Offender Map. (n.d.). SOR Public. Retrieved November 7, 2022, from <>

State Police : Firearms Instant Check System (FICS) : Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS) : State of Oregon. (n.d.). Retrieved November 7, 2022, from <>

ORS 811.109 – Penalties for speed violations. (n.d.). OregonLaws. Retrieved November 7, 2022, from <>

Fisher Phillips New Oregon Law Prohibits Most Employment Credit Checks. (2010, March 1). Fisher Phillips. Retrieved November 7, 2022, from <>

10 POTENTIALLY DISQUALIFYING CONVICTION LIST. (n.d.). Retrieved November 7, 2022, from <>

11 State Police : Criminal Justice Information Services : Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS) : State of Oregon. (n.d.). Retrieved November 7, 2022, from <>

12 Chapter 659A — Unlawful Discrimination in Employment, Public Accommodations and Real Property Transactions; Administrative and Civil Enforcement. (n.d.). Oregon State Legislature. Retrieved November 7, 2022, from <>

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