Requests for a Criminal History Background Check can be online, by mail, fax, email or in person.

Criminal History Record Checks come from the Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) which is part of the Department of Public Safety (DPS). The Iowa Criminal History Record contains information based on arrest data. This is reported to DCI from Iowa Criminal Justice Agencies. The record also contains disposition information from the Iowa Judicial Branch, as well as custody information from the Iowa Department of Corrections. 

The Iowa Criminal History Database, including the Iowa Sex Offender Database, contains information on Iowa arrests only. They do not include other states’ records, FBI records, or if a subject is convicted in federal court. Arrest information over 18 months old is not provided if the DCI does not have a final disposition for that charge.

Request a Background Check

Request a Background Check

To request a background check, you need the person’s first and last name, and date of birth. Providing other information such as gender, social security number, and middle name will assist with the search.

Each background check costs $15. Payment can be made by MasterCard, Visa, or Discover. Payment is due at the time the request is submitted. If you make more than one request, each one needs its own request form and billing form. Businesses may set up a prepayment account.

You can request a background check online or in person.

Request online Complete both the DCI Record Check form and the DCI Billing form with this interactive PDF that can be submitted online once you have completed all the required information and entered your payment information 

Email, fax, or U.S. mail Complete both the DCI Record Check form and the DCI Billing form, save it to your computer, and then print and send the document.

In Person:

You can drop off your request and billing forms to DCI at 215 East 7th Street, Des Moines, Iowa.   Walk-in processing hours are Monday-Friday; 8:00 am - 4:00 pm.  Expect results in 2 – 5 business days.

You can request your own Background Check in person and receive immediate results according to Iowa law. You must show a state-issued photo id to make this request.  


Accepted payment is MasterCard, Visa or Discover credit cards. 

You can set up a pre-payment account.  To request the forms to set up a pre-paid business account email DCI at: 

Additional Background Check Information

Is a Signed Disposition Needed? No. You do not need a signed release authorization.  If deferred judgement information is available, you will need a signed release. The signed release authorization must be on the request form. 

International Background Checks.  DCI will mail Background Check information to US and Canadian addresses. Faxes are only sent to US phone numbers. If you have other needs or questions, contact DCI at DCIRECORDCHECKS@DPS.STATE.IA.US

Related Agency - Public Safety

Address: 215 E 7th St., Des Moines, IA 50319

Phone: (515) 725-6000