Sex Offender Registry
We offer a National Sex Offender List search coordinated by the U.S. Department of Justice. This listing includes the 50 states, the five principal U.S. Territories, the District of Columbia, and participating federally recognized Indian tribes. This is a real-time search of these jurisdictions.
Various states have rules regarding what you can and can not do with information found on sex offender lists, including whether or not you can use it for employment decisions in a particular state. You should consult your legal counsel before requesting and using information disclosed on a particular state’s sex offender registry.
The rules vary from state to state and the release of information about particular offenses may be restricted. Even the names of some of some registered sex offenders in a particular state may be excluded from public disclosure by law. For example, in Massachusetts there are three levels of sex offenders, and the names of those designated Level 1 Sex Offenders cannot be disclosed to the public. In California approximately 25% of registered sex offenders are excluded from public disclosure by law. In Oregon only the names of those people that have been designated Predatory or found to be a sexually violent dangerous offender can be released. The names of all other individuals on the Oregon Sex Offender list cannot be made public.
As an example of how detailed the rules get and of the consequences for misuse of this search we have set out the rules for California employers below, but we can provide you other states’ conditions of use and the statutes that govern their sex offender registries.
CALIFORNIA USE OF SEX OFFENDER REGISTRY INFORMATION
Under California Penal Code Section 290 Sex Offender Registration Act employers may ask or consider sex offender information only to “protect a person at risk”. There is no definition of who is a person at risk, but the statute is an attempt to prohibit blanket disqualifications of those on a sex offender list.
California Penal Code 290.4(d) (2) states that unless authorized under other provisions of law, the use of any information disclosed under this act for employment purposes is prohibited. The civil and criminal penalties for misuse of this information as set forth in the California Sex Offender Registration Act are as follows:
The use of information disclosed pursuant to this section for purposes other than to protect a person at risk or unless otherwise permitted by law shall make the user liable for the actual damages, and any amount that may be determined by a jury or a court sitting without a jury, not exceeding three times the amount of actual damage, and not less than two hundred fifty dollars ($250), and attorney’s fees, exemplary damages, or a civil penalty not exceeding twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000).
Felony: Any person who uses information disclosed pursuant to this section to commit a felony shall be punished, in addition and consecutive to, any other punishment, by a five-year term of imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170.
Misdemeanor: Any person who, without authorization, uses information disclosed pursuant to this section to commit a misdemeanor shall be subject to, in addition to any other penalty or fine imposed, a fine of not less than five hundred dollars ($500) and not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000).
We can provide this information per your request, and per your determination that your use of this information is permissible under the law. Advanced Reporting LLC is allowed to report this information as doing so has been determined to be a free speech issue. Mendoza v. ADP Screening, 182 Cal. App. 4th 1644 (2010).