if I was arrested for petty theft but my case was dismissed, will the arrest show up and I will be asked about it?

I need to complete a fingerprint and background check. I am worried that the arrest will show up and I will be asked about it. What shows up on those kinds of checks?

Asked on September 17, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, New Mexico


B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If they arrested and recorded like they are supposed to, then yes, the petty theft could show up on a criminal background check. If you want to know exactly what will show up and how it will appear on your record, then go to your local sheriff and go through the process of obtaining your own criminal history. Anything you see on their will and can eventually end up in an employer's hands (even though technically they should only get conviction info.) Generally, crimianl background checks will show the date of arrest, the nature of the charges, and a general dispostion. These elements are usually inputted manually.... which means the high potenital for human error. It could cost you between $10-15, but it's really worth the fee to see how your criminal history is reported (if at all) and what you need to list on your job applications.

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