Criminal history summary records maintained by the DOJ are accessible only by legitimate law enforcement purposes and authorized agencies that process applications for licensing and employment. You, as an individuals, have the right to request a copy of your own criminal history record from the Department to review for accuracy and completeness. By law, "third parties" like a curious neighbor or ex-spouse, are not authorized to access these records.
It is advisable for every citizen to make periodic checks of their personal criminal history record. The wisdom of periodic self-checks is clear: it is better to know what's on the record than to wonder. Even traffic tickets (moving violations) will appear on your record and could stay on your record indefinitely. For instance, the speeding ticket that you got on your way to Las Vegas 15 years ago is probably still on your record as a misdemeanor.
Self-check is pretty easy and you don't have to go through a service like People Smart or CheckMate and pay for an incomplete record. All you need to do is obtain set of valid fingerprint images and submit a completed BCIA 8016RR form to the Department of Justice with a $25 processing fee (check or money order). Your total cost could be as low as $35 (plus the cost of postage) and you'll have a very detailed and complete record for your own reference.
Here's a handy list of instructions, with links to the official California Attorney General (CAG) website:
Note that California Residents must submit "Live Scan" fingerprints. You'll find Live Scan fingerprinting services available at most local police departments, sheriff's offices or from the many businesses that offer Live Scan fingerprinting services. Fingerprinting fees range from $10 to $80, depending on the location. Many of our expungement clients tell us that businesses offer the lowest price and faster service. CLICK HERE to find a nice resource from the CAG that helps you find the fingerprinting location nearest to you along with full contact information, fingerprint rolling fees, and acceptable methods of payment.
The attorneys at the Law Offices of Stull & Stull are highly experienced in handling expungements of California criminal records. We can answer any of your questions and help you clean up your record and put your past behind you!