When you’re skip tracing, you are developing a lot of information while trying to find the person who skipped. You’re looking at a variety of sources of information. When you do background checks you have the same type of thing going on although your objective is different.
With background checks, you may have a client who wants to know things about criminal history. Or they might want to verify a previous address. Those types of things are very specific background information, but with skip tracing you’re trying to actually find the person.
With a skip trace you may discover information about their criminal background. You may discover a little bit about their address history but that’s not the primary objective. Most of the time, the primary objective is to find an address where the person is staying.
You need to be able to find the same information for skip tracing and background checks. The difference is, with a skip trace, once you find the skip, you stop digging into his background.
Examples of information that can help you with both a background check and a skip trace are an addresses history and criminal records.
If you’re looking for a person, I can tell you that some of the things you’ll find in a criminal history are going to be pure gold for you. I’m not just talking about database searches. As wonderful as those are and as much as they can stream-line the process for you, they are not the end!
Just to know that a person got busted two years ago for picking a fight, aggravated assault, indecent exposure or whatever it might be, may not help you.
Even if the database gives you the address that the subject listed at the time of arrest, that may not be enough.
When you pull the actual criminal complaint, pull the arrest record and look at the mug shot, this type of information is very valuable and will give all sorts of clues.
When you’re looking for this person, who made bail for them two years ago?
If you got a buddy who’s good enough to make a bail for you at two o’clock in the morning because you smacked somebody in the head, that person probably knows where you are right now. As an investigator, I’m really interested in talking to anybody who might know where you are.
As you can see, background check and skip tracing skills really overlap.
If you want a shortcut to learning a lot of these tricks, tips and secrets, be sure to check out The Investigator’s Ultimate Guide to Missing Persons and Fugitives.
In it I take you step by step through skip tracing and how to find people. Plus I open up sources to you that you’ll also find useful for background checks!
Larry Kaye, P.I.