Chapter 1.5. National Search Of Criminal Records of California Penal Code >> Title 1. >> Part 4. >> Chapter 1.5.
In lieu of a national check of fingerprint records conducted
by the Federal Bureau of Investigation through the California
Department of Justice, state agencies shall contract with an
independent vendor to conduct a national search of the individuals'
criminal records, as provided in this chapter.
This chapter applies to:
(a) The California Commission for Teacher Preparation and
Licensing, in licensing of all teaching and services credential
applicants, pursuant to Section 44341 of the Education Code.
(b) The State Department of Social Services in licensing those
community care facility operators providing services to children as
mandated in Section 1522 of the Health and Safety Code.
(c) The county welfare department in carrying out its approval
authority for relative and nonrelative extended family member foster
care placements pursuant to Section 309 of the Welfare and
In order that a thorough search may be conducted, the
agencies listed in Section 11146 shall require applicants, as a
condition of employment or licensing, to provide (a) their social
security and drivers' license numbers, (b) educational history, (c)
three personal references, (d) a five-year employment and residence
history, and, (e) if appropriate, any other names they may have been
known under. This information shall be provided under penalty of
The agencies listed in Section 11146 may contract with any
vendor demonstrating the capability to conduct such background
searches in a timely manner and with the assurance of complete
confidentiality. Any such vendor shall (a) be a licensed private
investigator as defined in Section 7521 of the Business and
Professions Code; (b) have been in business for at least five years;
(c) be able to furnish bank references; (d) provide a minimum of one
million dollars ($1,000,000) in liability insurance, with the
contracting agency being named as an additional insured; and (e) be
able to provide services, via subcontracts if necessary, in all areas
of the state.
No contract shall be let unless it provides therein that the cost
per applicant for a search, including administrative costs, shall not
exceed forty dollars ($40). The state shall not be liable for any
amount in excess of forty dollars ($40) per applicant.
In order to expedite the work of the vendor, all
applications submitted to the vendor shall include the results of the
fingerprint checks conducted by the California Department of
Vendors are exempted from any provisions of Chapter 1
(commencing with Section 1798) of Title 1.8 of Part 4 of Division 3
of the Civil Code which prevent the vendor from conducting the
national search of individual criminal records required by this
Notwithstanding any other provision of law, applicants may
be charged for the actual cost of the national search required by
this statute, including administrative costs, not to exceed forty
Any vendor or employee of a vendor who knowingly furnishes
a record or information obtained from a record to a person who is
not authorized by law to receive the record or information shall be
guilty of a misdemeanor and fined not more than five thousand dollars
($5,000), or imprisoned in a county jail for not more than one year,
Any vendor or employee of a vendor who intentionally
discloses information, not otherwise public, which that person knows
or should reasonably know was obtained from confidential information,
shall be subject to a civil action for invasion of privacy by the
individual to whom the information pertains.
In any successful action brought under this section, the
complainant, in addition to any special or general damages awarded,
shall be awarded a minimum of two thousand five hundred dollars
($2,500) in exemplary damages as well as attorney's fees and other
litigation costs reasonably incurred in the suit.
The right, remedy, and cause of action set forth in this section
shall be nonexclusive and is in addition to all other rights,
remedies, and causes of action for invasion of privacy, inherent in
Section 1, Article I of the California Constitution.