Illinois itself doesn’t inspire much in the imagination, but think Chicago, and the mob and corruption spring to mind. There’s a little story to help illustrate (plus many others I’m sure): It’s Prohibition Chicago, and 7 men found themselves lined up against a building. Next thing you know 4 gun-wielding goons, two of them in uniform, turn the men into rag dolls in cold blood. Today these killings are known as the “Saint Valentine’s Day Massacre,” and many have suggested Al Capone was pulling the strings. This event, along with using fingerprint identification of the victims, helped bring about the Illinois Bureau of Identification (BOI) in 1931 as the central directory for criminal records in the state.
In 1991 further legislation known as the Uniform Conviction Information Act (UCIA) resulted in all Illinois criminal conviction history information being made accessible to the public. Records include:
- Felony Convictions
- Misdemeanor Convictions
There are a number of different ways to acquire Illinois records using the state system or an online service. You may request UCIA records using either fingerprints or a name using a Live Scan location or by mail. Live Scan providers can help you with the fingerprints and submission and charge a $15 search fee, and also usually a provider fee. Consult the yellow pages for your nearest Live Scan site.
Illinois also provides an electronic system for conducting background checks and this system is open to individuals and businesses alike. It is a fairly complicated process so be prepared to spend some time registering, installing software and leering the ropes. Each search is $10 once you’re set up. Below we have included links to the best resources we could find for doing background check and records searches in Illinois, including the the Uniform Conviction Information Act (UCIA).