ND Seal ND Board of Social Work Examiners

Criminal History Background Check and Child Abuse and Neglect Background Inquiry

According to NDCC 43-41-04.2, all new applicants for licensure shall be required to submit to a statewide and nationwide criminal history check as well as consent to a Child Abuse Information Index Check and authorization for the ND Department of Human Services or its designee to release to the Board reports of decisions that services are required for child abuse or neglect filed pursuant to NDCC 50-25.1-05.2. Applicants who hold a current North Dakota license and are applying for an upgrade of their current licenses are not required to complete the criminal history checks and the Child Abuse Information Index Check.

The Board does not require current licensees to complete the background check if they are upgrading to the next license level. 

Background Check Process

License by Initial Licensure: The background check packet will be mailed to your home address with your testing approval letter.

License by Reciprocity Applicants: The background check packet will be mailed to your home address when your application is received.

The Criminal History Record Check Request form, Child Abuse and Neglect Background Inquiry, and two (2) fingerprint cards will be mailed to you depending on your method of applying for licensure as noted above. Complete both forms and mail them back to the Board office along with the two (2) fingerprint cards containing your set of prints.

You will need to have your fingerprints done by a police or sheriff’s department official or by a fingerprinting agency. Please call ahead, as fingerprinting may only be offered on certain week days. There may be an additional cost for fingerprinting depending on the agency you go to. If your fingerprints are not complete or clear, they will be rejected by the FBI and you will need to get new fingerprints. If available, digital fingerprints are less likely to be rejected by the FBI than inked fingerprints. Rejection by the FBI will further delay the licensure process. You cannot take your own fingerprints nor have a friend do it for you! Both cards must be printed on and submitted directly to the Board office.

All costs associated with obtaining a background check and the Child Abuse Information Index Check are the responsibility of the applicant. The cost to run the criminal history checks is $41.25. You must submit a check or money order for $41.25, made payable to the North Dakota Attorney General along with the form and both fingerprint cards to the Board office.

Background Check Results

When your fingerprints, background check fee, and background check forms are received in the Board office, they will be immediately submitted for processing by ND BCI. It may take up to 6 weeks for the Board to receive the results. Licenses will not be issued until the background check results have been received by the Board. If the results are clear and when all other documentation is received, the license will be issued within one week of all information being received. If you have past charges or convictions on your background check, the licensure process may be delayed for review by the Board Chair or the full Board.