How to Perform a Background Check on a Nanny

How to Perform a Background Check on a Nanny

Protect your family by hiring a trustworthy babysitter

By Sabah Karimi

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Performing a background check for a nanny will help you determine the candidate's level of education, level of reliability and also indicate whether they have a strong sense of responsibility. When you perform the background check yourself, you will need to ask for some very specific information from the nanny in order to start the process.

  • What You Need to Know
  • You can perform a basic online search using the nanny's name to learn more about their background and work history.
  • You can hire a background check company to comprehensively investigate a candidate's past or follow the steps below to do it yourself.
Ensure That Your Nanny is Trustworthy

Step 1:

Request references of parents or caregivers the nanny has worked with. Finding out what other parents or caregivers thought of the nanny's services can help you make a more informed decision when selecting a childcare provider.

Step 2:

Ask the nanny or babysitter to fill out a generic job application. This application will include fields for their driver's license number, last three to five employers, colleges and schools they have attended and their most current address. The application will also include an area that asks the nanny if they have been convicted of a crime or had any traffic violations. You can then use some of this information as part of the verification process.

Step 3:

Request authorization to perform a background check. In order to contact the nanny's former employers, schools and other contacts listed on his or her application, you will need written authorization. You can draft a simple document that states that you have the nanny's authorization to conduct the background check, and both of you can sign and date it.

Step 4:

Purchase a criminal report online. Run a criminal record check by ordering a full state criminal record history report. This report will indicate whether the nanny has ever been convicted of a crime.

Step 5:

Run a credit check. You will need to use the nanny's Social Security number to request a credit report from the major credit bureaus. A clean credit record may be an indication of the nanny's level of responsibility.

Step 6:

Check the nanny's driving record. Driving records are typically controlled by the Department of Motor Vehicles or Division of Motor Vehicles. You will need to provide the name, address and Social Security number of the nanny, and pay a fee to get access to the record. Fees vary by state.

Step 7:

Call the employers, schools and other contacts listed on the employment application. You can call to verify that the nanny had indeed attended the schools listed and worked with the companies listed on the application.

Step 8:

Call at least three to four references the nanny provided. Call each person to find out what their experience was working with the candidate, how long they worked with him or her, and if they would hire the nanny again.

  • Tips & Warnings
  • If a reference or contact cannot be reached, don't be afraid to ask the nanny for more information.
  • If you're still unsure about a nanny's credibility or level of trustworthiness after performing the background check, you may consider hiring a local investigator to perform a more thorough check for a fee.
  • Don't be afraid to turn down a nanny because of the information provided on their job application or after completing your background check.

About the Author

Sabah Karimi is a regular contributor to DexKnows.

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