Home to the city of Chicago, Cook County occupies the northeastern corner of Illinois with a population of about 5.2 million, the largest of any county in the state. Surrounding Cook are five other counties—DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry, and Will—which form the Chicago metropolitan area.
With nearly half the state’s population living within its borders, Cook County boasts a bustling economy that employs huge numbers of people. Some of the largest Cook County employers include Walgreens, Walmart, Advocate Health Care, and AT&T Illinois.
For employers in Cook County, the large population represents a fertile labor pool but also a higher level of risk. Mitigating that risk through careful vetting is critical; for employers, taking a big-picture view of job applicants should involve checking to see if they have a criminal record within the county—and, potentially, taking an even wider view by examining criminal records held in adjacent counties. Your applicant may never have lived in DuPage County, but may still have committed crimes there— while maintaining a “clean” record in Cook County.
Ready to upgrade your county hiring process? The first step to using background checks responsibly is ensuring that your business operates in compliance with fair hiring regulations, particularly the rules that apply to private companies.
Cook County is subject to Illinois’s statewide Job Opportunities for Qualified Applicants Act, a “ban the box” law that disallows private employers from placing questions about criminal history on applications. Employers must schedule the applicant for an interview or provide a conditional job offer before looking into their background.
These rules apply only to businesses employing 15 or more people. Exemptions exist for positions in which federal or state laws prohibit the hiring of people with specific criminal convictions.
Once you’re certain that your business’s hiring policy plays by the rules, you can engage the appropriate services for background check support. backgroundchecks.com provides a suite of powerful services to help. Easily access detailed local criminal records with our county level background check or expand your search to include DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry, and Will counties.
Our US OneSEARCH provides instant results from Cook County and its neighbors for a fast turnaround, but you may wish to pursue a direct search of courthouse records instead. Direct courthouse record searches can take from one to three business days but yield an up-to-date look at the current state of the county’s records on the subject.
Keep in mind that we strive to maintain the most up-to-date electronic database possible, but records may change in between updates; for example, a case currently listed as “pending” in our database may be dropped or amended. Direct courthouse record searches can take from 1 to 3 business days but yield an up-to-date look at the current state of the county’s records on the subject.
Information in an instant county-level background search, such as the US OneSEARCH, comes from multiple sources, including:
Reports from the above sources may contain a range of information, including the subject’s:
Finding an applicant who perfectly fits an open position can be a challenge, but we believe that checking that applicant’s background should be easy. Discover how you can quickly gain a better understanding of your Cook County applicants right now with help from backgroundchecks.com.
Learn more about our county background check options