Background Checks

  • About Background Checks

    Background checks are processed through the Background Investigation Unit (BIU), which is a part of the Division of Early Care and Learning.

    Colorado applicants are required to participate in a criminal background check and a child abuse and neglect records check. 

    1. Criminal Background Checks: This is a fingerprint-based criminal history record check through the Colorado Bureau of Investigation and the Federal Bureau of Investigation to determine if the applicant has been convicted of any criminal offenses that are identified in the Colorado Child Care Licensing Act. The check is completed for employees and owners of a licensed child care facility, including Family Child Care Homes. The individual providing care in the Family Child Care Home and anyone living in that home will need to complete a background check.
    2. Child Abuse and Neglect Records Check: This is a check of the Colorado Department of Human Services’ (CDHS) Trails database for confirmed reports of child abuse or neglect. This check is done when a typewritten request and fee is submitted to the BIU for people requesting this information.

    Out-of-state applicants are required to participate in a child abuse and neglect records check:
    1. Child Abuse and Neglect Records Check:  This is a check of the Colorado Department of Human Services’ (CDHS) Trails database for information to determine if the applicant has been identified as having a finding of child abuse or neglect. This check is done when a typewritten request and fee is submitted to the BIU for people requesting this information. Please note: The Department has limited authority to conduct checks for out-of-state applicants. At this time, the Department may not conduct checks for purposes outside of adoption, foster care and the CASA program.

  • Colorado-based Applicants: Criminal Background Check

    The BIU works with the Colorado Bureau of Investigation (CBI) when searching criminal history on all employees or workers of child care centers. The criminal background check process starts when a fingerprint submission has been made and the background check fee has been paid. An employee’s fingerprint information will be flagged if the individual is arrested after the original fingerprints are processed. 

    Are individuals required to submit fingerprint cards for each facility they work at? 
    Colorado state laws limit portability of criminal background checks. An individual must submit finger print cards for each child care facility they are employed at. Learn more about the criminal background check and CBI.

    Colorado Applicant Background Services (CABS) program
    The CBI Biometric Identification and Records Unit processes all legislatively required fingerprint-based criminal history background checks for employment and licensing purposes. Senate Bill 17-189, Consumer Options in Fingerprint Background Checks, was approved on April 24, 2017 which allows “any third party approved by the Colorado Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to take an applicant’s fingerprints for the purpose of obtaining a fingerprint-based criminal history record check.” The CABS program will be supervised by the CBI, abiding by all National and State security guidelines.

    The CBI has contracted two third party vendors to participate in the CABS program Idemia (via IdentoGO Centers) and American BioIdentity (via Colorado Fingerprinting).  These vendor services will be located throughout the State and will electronically transmit the civil fingerprints. 

    The CABS program will only change the method in which fingerprints are processed and transmitted to the CBI.  The program will not impact the way the results of the background checks are administered.  All background check results will continue to be provided to the respective agency accounts via the CBI’s Secure Document Delivery System (SDDS) as they do currently.


    Under the CABS program, applicants will enroll and schedule an appointment on the website of the vendor of their choice: IndentoGO or Colorado Fingerprinting.
     

    Licensed Family Child Care Home Providers Instructions
     

    New Applicants
    New Family Child Care Home Provider Applicants must complete all relevant Family Child Care Home Application documents and training; and submit the licensing package and fee to the Division of Early Care and Learning, Colorado Department of Human Services.  The applicant will then be assigned a license number and given instructions how to complete the Colorado Bureau of Investigation/Federal Bureau of Investigation fingerprint-based background check.

    Current Providers

    • IdentoGO: Current Licensed Family Child Care Home Providers utilizing IndentoGo must select the Licensed Childcare/Camps/Adoption links for Services Name and Codes (25YJ15).  When prompted, please enter CBI Account Number CONCJ1705 and when prompted again, enter your Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS) Day Care License Number (DCL)/Provider Number.
    • Colorado Fingerprinting (Start date to be announced): Current Licensed Family Child Care Home Providers utilizing Colorado Fingerprinting must select the Childcare – Licensed (including Foster Care, Camps, Kinship, Adoption and Home Providers) link. When prompted, please enter CBI Account Number CONCJ1705 and your Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS) Day Care License Number (DCL)/Provider Number.

    Employer and Address
    Please note that Licensed Family Child Care Home Providers employer is the Colorado Department of Human Services.  The address for fingerprinting purposes is:

    CBC Unit
    1575 Sherman Street, 1st Floor
    Denver, CO 80203

  • Colorado Applicant Background Services (CABS) Vendors

    Under the CABS program, applicants will enroll and schedule an appointment on the website of the vendor of their choice: IndentoGO or Colorado Fingerprinting.
     

    IdentoGO

    Please schedule a fingerprint appointment by completing the following:

    Service Names and Codes
    Step 1: Service codes and account/licensing numbers are unique to your hiring/licensing agency, please select the link that corresponds with the service that you are applying under:

    Step 2: Select: Schedule or Manage Appointment
    Step 3: Follow the prompts to enter requested information

    Services codes
    For convenience, you may download, complete and print a copy of the attached CABS form to use when making an appointment with IdentoGO.  As a reminder service codes and account/licensing numbers are unique to your hiring/licensing agency, therefore you must ensure that you choose the service code that corresponds with the service that you offer.

    Payment for IndentoGo’s Fingerprint Services
    You may pay for your fingerprint services at your fingerprint appointment using credit card, business check, or money order.  No cash or personal checks will be accepted. Your fingerprints will be submitted to the Colorado Bureau of Investigation and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

    Learn more about Indemia   
     

    Colorado Fingerprinting (start date to be announced)

    Colorado Fingerprinting applicants can choose to be fingerprinted at any of their locations.
     
    Applicants will get started through Colorado Fingerprint’s Online Enrollment Center.  As part of the enrollment process each applicant will provide the CBI unique ID assigned to their employer together with other identifying information. 

    Applicant Instructions

    1. Applicants will go online to schedule an appointment. Each applicant will choose a location, date and time that is convenient for their appointment. 
    2. Applicants will pay the fee (CBI and FBI fee, plus $10 vendor service fee) using a credit/debit card.  After the payment is processed the applicant will receive, by text message and email, an Order ID that will be used to identify the applicant upon arrival at the fingerprint location.
    3. When applicants arrive at the chosen fingerprint location on the scheduled date and time, they will be required to identify themselves to the enrollment agent using a valid photo ID and the Order ID (email or text version). Thereafter the Livescan fingerprints, digital photo and digital signature will be captured and submitted to CBI.  Please note that before fingerprints are taken, all CABS applicants must register through Colorado Fingerprinting online Enrollment Center with assistance, if needed, from the vendor’s Call Center.
    4. Providers may utilize the applicant instructions below, which includes the reason fingerprinted and the CBI Unique ID assigned to the employer/provider.
    5. Fingerprint results are returned by CBI in the same manner as they were prior to the implementation of the CABS program.
    6. HR Administrators will have access to the Status Portal which may be use to track employees fingerprint process.  This portal will allow them to see, at any time, the status of: -
      • Registered Applicants - Applicants that have registered for fingerprinting.
      • Appointment Details - Selected fingerprinting location and appointment day and time.
      • Date Fingerprinted - Date the applicant was fingerprinted.
      • Payment Method - View the payment status 
      • Completion/Rejection Status - The status of the fingerprint within the CBI.  That is, was the submission to CBI successful or rejected.

    Learn more about Colorado Fingerprinting

  • Criminal Background Check Frequently Asked Questions

    Who is required to complete a criminal background check?

    • Every applicant for an original child care license
    • Every adult (18 or older) who resides at a licensed child care facility
    • Every adult hired by a licensed child care facility

    Each of these individuals must submit a complete set of fingerprints taken by one of The Colorado Bureau of Investigation (CBI) contracted third party vendors Idemia (via IdentoGO Centers) or American BioIdentity (via Colorado Fingerprinting) participating in the Colorado Applicant Background Services (CABS) program to perform a criminal record check by the CBI and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The same fingerprint submission is used for both the CBI and FBI criminal record checks. CBC exceptions are defined in Section 7.701.33 B of Colorado's General Rules For Child Care Facilities.  

    Where can I get fingerprinted?
    Idemia (via IdentoGO Centers) and American BioIdentity (via Colorado Fingerprinting) require that applicants enroll and schedule an appointment on one of their websites.  Instructions on how to proceed will be provided to applicants once they enroll and the appointment is made.

    Will I need a fingerprint card?
    Physical fingerprint cards will not be accepted beginning October 24, 2018.

    Submitting the Fingerprint 

    • Requests for a criminal record check must be submitted to the CBI via their third party vendors Idemia (via IdentoGO Centers) or American BioIdentity (via Colorado Fingerprinting) prior to the employee’s first day of employment at the facility.
    • Facilities will pay the respective vendor.  
    • Payment of the fee for the criminal record check is the responsibility of the individual being checked or the home, center, facility, or agency.


    Where do I go to get fingerprinted?
    Applicants will be provided with the available locations and times to choose from when they are making their appointment online.

    Is a Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) background check required?
    Colorado state law mandates that all employees hired on or after August 10, 2011 at any licensed child care facility, except summer camps operating for less than 90 calendar days, shall complete a FBI background check in addition to the CBI and the Abuse and Neglect background checks. 

    What is the cost for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) background and the Colorado Bureau of Investigation (CBI) background checks?
    Child care providers or prospective employees submit their fingerprint through Idemia (via IdentoGO Centers) or American BioIdentity (via Colorado Fingerprinting), but must attach the required fees.  The fee for CBI and FBI background checks combined is $39.50 (FBI $22.00 and CBI $17.50).   Idemia (via IdentoGO Centers) and American BioIdentity (via Colorado Fingerprinting), currently charge a transaction fee of $10.00.  A total cost of $49.50.

    What do I do if my fingerprints are rejected?
    The vendors, Idemia (via IdentoGO Centers) and American BioIdentity (via Colorado Fingerprinting), will advise applicants when their fingerprints are rejected and provide them with instructions on how to be re-fingerprinted. 

    What is a disposition and how do I obtain one?
    A disposition is the final outcome of a court case.

    To obtain a disposition, contact the court in which the case was heard and ask them for a certified copy of the disposition. You will need to give the court clerk the case number of the specific court case or provide your name, Social Security number and date of birth. Click here to obtain a listing of court addresses and phone numbers.

    Why do several different people ask me for the dispositions for charges?
    The Background Investigation Unit (BIU) acts as an information-gathering unit only. They do not provide disposition copies to any other unit. BIU provides Licensing with the outcome of the court case but they may need to see additional information provided on the final disposition copy to make a licensing decision.

    How long does the background check process take?
    Times vary according to what information is being requested and the number of charges involved. On average, it takes 4-8 weeks to gather all background information.

    If I am leaving one licensed facility to work in another licensed facility, do I need to be re-fingerprinted?
    Yes, you do need to be re-fingerprinted.

    How do I complete the CBC transfer process?
    The transfer process allows employees and facility operators of licensed child care facilities who have been previously fingerprinted to use those fingerprints for employment at one of their other licensed child care facility at a reduced cost to the facility.  
    To complete the transfer process:

    • Submit fingerprints through Idemia (via IdentoGO Centers) or American BioIdentity (via Colorado Fingerprinting)
    • Indicate to them that you are doing a TRANSFER and C.R.S. 26-6-107
    • The fee for transfer is $24.00 ($2.00 for CBI and $22.00 for FBI) for each applicant


    Are individuals required to submit fingerprint information for each facility they work at? 
    Colorado state laws limit portability of criminal background checks.  An individual must submit fingerprint information for each child care facility they are employed at. Learn more about the criminal background check and CBI. 

  • Criminal Background Check Privacy Statement and Notice to Applicants

    Privacy Statement

    Access the privacy statement.

    Notice to Applicants

    As an applicant for a position requiring fingerprints to be submitted to the Colorado Bureau of Investigation and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, YOUR FINGERPRINTS WILL BE   SUBMITTED TO THESE AGENCIES TO CHECK STATE AND FBI RECORDS.
        
    Discrepancies on your Colorado record can be challenged and corrected by contacting the Colorado Bureau of Investigation at 690 Kipling St., Suite 3000, Denver, CO 80215, or by calling the Identification Unit at (303) 239-4208. Additional information is available from CBl's website at www.colorado.gov/cbi.

    Discrepancies on records from the FBI or relating to another state can be challenged through the FBI. Information, including that listed below, can be found at their website at www.fbi.gov.  

    The U.S. Department of Justice Order 556-73 establishes rules and regulations for the    subject of an FBI Identification Record to obtain a copy of his or her own record for review. The FBl's Criminal Justice Information Services (CJlS) Division processes these requests.

    Who May Request a Copy of a Record (or Proof That a Record Does Not Exist)
    Only you can request a copy of your own Identification Record.

    How to Request a Copy of Your Record
    The FBI offers two methods for requesting your FBI Identification Record or proof that a record does not exist.

    • Option 1: Submit your request directly to the FBI.
    • Option 2: Submit to an FBI-approved Channeler, which is a private business that has contracted with the FBI to receive the fingerprint submission and relevant data, collect the associated fee(s), electronically forward the fingerprint submission with the necessary information to the FBICJIS Division for a national criminal history record check, and receive the electronic record check result for dissemination to the individual. Contact each Channeler for processing times.
  • Colorado-based Applicants: Child Abuse and Neglect Records Check

    This is a review of the CDHS Trails database to check if an individual or employee has any confirmed cases of child abuse or neglect. 

    Employees working at more than one child care or preschool locations operated by the same governing body (e.g. school district) require only one Trails background check.

    Home Providers: Please note that child abuse and neglect records check (Trails) forms are not needed for any person residing in the family child care home. Child abuse and neglect records checks are only required for substitutes, aids or volunteers that will be working in a family child care home, but do not reside in the family child care home.

    Foster care and Adoption: For adoption and foster care, both marriage partners must provide signatures for processing this request. Colorado licensed facilities must use one form per couple for foster care and adoption applicants.

    How to request a Child Abuse and Neglect Records Check

    • Complete, print and sign a Child Abuse and Neglect Records Check form. Instructions and sample forms are available upon request.  You will use one of the following:

    • Write check or money order payable to the “CDHS-BIU Records and Reports” for required Background Investigation with the required fee of $35 per form. We do not accept cash. 
    • Mail completed form(s) and payment to:

    CDHS Child Abuse and Neglect Records Check
    Division of Early Care and Learning, CDHS
    1575 Sherman Street, 1st Floor
    Denver, CO 80203-1714

    How do I know which form to use?
    • Facility Inquiry Form: The background inquiry is a check for any confirmed cases of child abuse or neglect. Licensed child care facilities must use this form. If you are a licensed child care facility, this check does not replace the criminal background check required for licensure.  
    • Individual Inquiry Form: The Individual Inquiry form should only be submitted for those individuals or facilities not licensed or required to be licensed by the CDHS Division of Early Care and Learning. The Individual Inquiry form includes a Waiver and Authorization to Release Information section. In order for information to be released directly to another person or agency, this authorization must be completed and signed by the individual for whom the background check is being completed.  

    Eligible Applicants for Child Abuse and Neglect Records Checks
    Due to a new statutory interpretation of Colorado Revised Statute (CRS) 19-1-307, the Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS) Office of Early Childhood (OEC) Background Investigations Unit can only process requests for the following applicants or purposes:
    • applicants for a license to operate a child care facility or agency
    • exempt family child care home providers participating in the Colorado Child Care Assistance Program 
    • applicants for an employee or volunteer position with a licensed neighborhood youth organization
    • applicants for an employee position with a guest child care facility or a public services short-term child care facility
    • the Colorado Department of Education when investigating an allegation of abuse by an employee of a Colorado school district
    • prospective CASA volunteers for the CASA program
    • screening any person responsible for providing child care pursuant to a contract with a county department for placements out of the home or private child care
    • prospective adoptive parents
    • private adoption agencies in any state screening prospective adoptive parents
    • Colorado-based qualified county departments, individuals, or child placement agencies and other states’ child placement agencies and state, county and local government agencies approved to screen prospective adoptive parents, foster care parents, kinship care parents, or any adult residing in the home 
    • licensed child placement agencies screening prospective foster parents, any adult residing in the home of the prospective foster parent, and specialized group facilities, when access is limited to information concerning a current or prospective foster parent, an adult residing in the home of the current or prospective foster parent, or a specialized group facility
    The CDHS OEC Background Investigations Unit cannot process requests for applicants or purposes not listed in CRS 19-1-307 which may include but are not limited to:
    • individuals participating in a volunteer organization and working in a child care program that is NOT licensed by CDHS; 
    • individuals living outside of Colorado that work in licensed or legally exempt child care programs that receive Child Care and Development Block Grant funds;
    • unlicensed Head Start/Early Head Start programs;
    • background check companies;
    • tribal entities (except for exempt family child care home providers);
    • health departments; and 
    • CDHS contract employees (these checks must be processed by the CDHS Division of Human Resources under the Vulnerable Persons Act, CRS 27-90-111).
  • Out-of-state Applicants: Child Abuse and Neglect Records Check

    This is a review of the CDHS Trails database to check if an individual or employee has any confirmed cases of child abuse or neglect. 

    Eligible Out of State Applicants
    Colorado Revised Statute (CRS) 19-1-307 limits the authority of the Department to conduct checks for out-of-state applicants to the following:

    • prospective CASA volunteers for the CASA program;
    • individuals, or child placement agencies and other states’ child placement agencies and state, county and local government agencies approved to screen prospective adoptive parents, foster care parents, kinship care parents, or any adult residing in the home; and
    • licensed child placement agencies screening prospective foster parents, any adult residing in the home of the prospective foster parent, and specialized group facilities, when access is limited to information concerning a current or prospective foster parent, an adult residing in the home of the current or prospective foster parent, or a specialized group facility.

    At this time, we do not have the authority to conduct checks for individuals living outside of Colorado that work in licensed or legally exempt child care programs that receive Child Care and Development Block Grant funds.

    How to request a Child Abuse and Neglect Records Check
    If you live outside of Colorado but are required to conduct this check in your state:

    • ​Complete, print and sign a Child Abuse and Neglect Records Check form. Instructions and sample forms are available upon request.  
      • If you need the result of the background inquiry to be sent to a third party, you must complete and sign the Waiver of Authorization to Release Information section
      • Individual Inquiry Form
    • Write check or money order payable to the “CDHS-BIU Records and Reports” for required Background Investigation with the required fee of $35 per form. We do not accept cash. 
    • Mail completed form(s) and payment to:

    CDHS Child Abuse and Neglect Records Check
    Division of Early Care and Learning, CDHS
    1575 Sherman Street, 1st Floor
    Denver, CO 80203-1714

  • Disqualifying Crimes
    CDHS provides the results of the background checks in a statement that indicates whether the child care employee is eligible or ineligible for employment within a licensed child care facility, without revealing specific disqualifying information. If the employee is ineligible, the department will provide information about each disqualifying crime to the employee.

    View disqualification criteria.
  • Notification of Flag/Name Removal from License
    Future arrest information is received for individuals no longer employed at a facility or residing in a child care home until the facility completes a Name/Flag Removal Form.

    Name/Flag Removal Forms must be filled out, signed and sent to the BIU when the employee resigns or is terminated, the facility closes, or a person living in the home moves out. 

    The BIU determines if a person’s background information meets the Child Care Licensing Act criteria or does not meet the criteria for the background check. As a child care facility owner or employee, you may be asked to submit forms regarding the background check results to the BIU, to the Licensing Specialist or to a representative of CDHS. It is the owner/employee’s responsibility to keep copies of these documents.

Questions? Contact the Background Investigation Unit:

Background Investigation Unit
Division of Early Care and Learning, CDHS
1575 Sherman Street, 1st Floor
Denver, CO 80203
Phone: 1-800-799-5876
Fax: 303-866-5340

Criminal Background Investigation Checks: cdhs_oec_cbc_biu@state.co.us  

Background Inquiry Checks: cdhs_oec_backgroundinvestigation@state.co.us