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What Shows on a Driving History Check?

Driving background checks are run whenever anyone applies for a job involving driving or operating machinery, but most people are not sure what exactly these checks will be looking at. In this article, we will explain how to see what your driving history check will show by running a background check on yourself. 

Driving History Checks - what they show

If you are applying for a job that involves driving or even operating heavy machinery, you can be almost certain that you will have to undergo a driving background check. This is so employers can be absolutely sure that they are not hiring someone with a record of dangerous driving. It also helps them to keep their insurance premiums down, and avoid liability for accidents caused by their employees.

But exactly what information will a driving background check reveal? It is a question we are regularly asked, and the truth is that it varies from one person to another and depending on where in the country you are based.

In this article, we will detail exactly what type of information you can expect to be revealed by a driving background check, explain how you can get one step ahead of your new boss by seeing what your own background check reveals, and recommend the best background checking sites for you to use.

First, what exactly is a driving background check?

The term ‘background check’ is used for various different things, so it is important to define what we mean by a driving background check.

A background checking site is a website that allows you to search through public records to find out information about people. People are often surprised by just how much information about them is held in the public domain, and available for anyone to look at.

Accessing it has always been difficult, but digitization means these sites can run a comprehensive, and most of all accurate background check in a matter of minutes.

A public background checking site can reveal all sorts of different things, such as:

  • Criminal records (state, county, and city)
  • Licenses held
  • Education history (high school and college)
  • Employment history
  • Work authorization
  • Credit history
  • Driving records
  • Social media profiles

Individually, these records don’t reveal too much but when they are put together in a single report they give a startling accurate image of what a person is like.

What is the most effective background checking site?

To run a background check on yourself, you will need to use a public background checking site. There are a lot of these sites out there but some are a lot better than others. We have been testing all the top background checking sites to see which gives the fastest and most accurate results.

As a result of these tests, we have identified the top two public background checking sites on the market right now:

1. TruthFinder

TruthFinder - Editors choice

TruthFinder is another site which proved to be impressively effective. No matter what type of information and search we threw at it, this site always returned unbelievably accurate results, even if we tried search terms deliberately intended to trip them up.

The speed of a TruthFinder check is not quite as impressive as some other sites we tested. But the information they find is pulled together in excellent and readable reports and their apps and desktop dashboard are first-rate, look great, and are extremely simple to use.

We were particularly impressed with TruthFinder’s responsive 24/7 customer support. This is available on a toll-free number and is a really helpful service, especially useful for beginners. Prices are affordable, at $27.78 per month, or $23.02 per month on the 2-month plan. Putting all this together made using TruthFinder a very positive experience which was not always the case with every site we tested.

EXCLUSIVE DEAL: Looking for deep insight into your own public record? Try TruthFinder, one of the industry titans. Get the service with our generous reader discount.

2. Instant CheckMate

Instant Checkmate - Editors choice

Instant CheckMate is another site that was able to generate extremely effective results, even with a minimal amount of information. We were especially impressed by the speed of their searches with accurate results able to be generated faster than any other site we tested.

Instant CheckMate delivers its impressive results in easy-to-follow reports and also offers nicely designed apps and a good desktop dashboard. Their customer service team was very helpful as well, making for an impressive and fast all-round service.

Prices for Instant CheckMate start at $34.78 per month, or with a discount, a three-month subscription is available $27.82 per month. At these prices, they are not the cheapest background checking site around, but if you want accurate results fast, they are worth spending a little more for.

What can you use a background check for?

Because background checks can reveal so much information about people, they are used for all sorts of different reasons. Some of these reasons include:

  • Employment checks – Employees frequently run a background check before hiring someone to ensure their resume is accurate and they aren’t hiding anything that might preclude them from the job.
  • Criminal checks – A lot of people feel the need to run background checks on neighbors and other people in their lives to ensure they are hiding a secret criminal past or just to put their minds at ease.
  • Finding out more about someone – We all have a mysterious person in their lives that we wish we knew more about. If you want to know more about that person, a background check is a quick, simple, and anonymous way to find out.
  • Finding a lost family member or friend – If you have a lost aunt, cousin, or half-sister you want to track down but have no way of contacting, a background check can help you find them quickly and easily.
  • Determining what information is out there about you – Before applying for a job, or just out of curiosity, you might want to know what information about yourself is publicly available and will show up on a background check. Running a background check on yourself will tell you.

This is why there are so many public background checking sites available these days. It is also why there are so many consumer background checking sites which specialize in employment background checks and even more niche searches such as driving checks.

If you are expecting to have a driving background check run on you, it is well worth running one on yourself to make sure there is nothing going to show up that you wouldn’t want your new boss to know about.

What shows on a driving background check?

Along with a passport and a social security number, one of the public documents that most people hold is a driving license. Everyone who has a driving license also has a public record of their driving history that can be accessed by anybody.

This driving history is surprisingly detailed and can reveal a great deal about what type of driver you are and how suitable you are for a job that involves driving or operating heavy machinery. The sort of information it will reveal includes:

  • Basic information – Driving records will all include basic identifying formation about you including your name, address of residence, and gender. This sort of information is not especially useful for a driving check in particular, but it does help to check that information that has been found elsewhere is accurate.
  • Issuing details – A driving background check will show your individual driving license number and other details about where the license was issued such as which state.
  • License classifications – License classes can be complicated because every state has different classes. These are usually divided by letter designations (such as Class A, Class B, and so on) but these can mean different things in different states. They are usually categorized based on vehicle weight with Class A being the most common license used for standard cars and other lighter vehicles. Class C is usually a commercial license that means you can drive trucks, buses, and other large vehicles. If you are applying for a commercial driving job, this is vital information for a prospective employer.
  • License status – This bit of your driving record tells your prospective new employer whether your driving license is clean and of good standing or whether it has been subjected to a suspension or another type of restriction. It is also this section that will reveal when your license is due to expire and if it has already done so.
  • Violations and penalties – This is the section that most employers are interested in. It details any traffic violations, offenses, or other punishments and penalties you have incurred since qualifying to drive. It will include every driving offense no matter how minor, so expect your teenage speeding violations to show up along any more serious conviction such as reckless driving, crashes, DUI, or drug-driving incidents. It will also detail any fines, license suspensions, license revocations, license points, and other penalties

Will a driving history check stop you from getting a job?

This is the question everyone asks but which is almost impossible to answer. It will depend on what your driving record shows and what the job you are applying for requires.

In many cases, if your recent driving history is clean, employers are willing to overlook a couple of speed tickets you got issued with fifteen years ago. But this may not be the case if the job you want involves driving children or operating extremely expensive or dangerous equipment.

If you have a more serious driving offense on your record, this is likely to be more problematic. But there are some possible solutions. It is possible to get a criminal record sealed or expunged which in theory means it will not show up on a criminal background check.

This does not necessarily mean it won’t show on a specialized driving background check, but it does give you a good argument to take to your new boss and say that ‘the court thought I was a reformed character so I deserve a chance’. There are, of course, no guarantees that this will work though.

If you want to know what a driving license check on you will reveal, the best thing to do is to run an advanced check on yourself using one of the sites we have recommended in this article. Armed with this information, you can make an informed decision about whether it is worth applying for a job in the first place and how to explain anything that does show up on your check in advance.


A driving background check will reveal your full driving record in addition to all the usual information that a regular consumer or public background check will show up.

In this article, we have explained exactly what information this will include and what it will tell your prospective new boss about you. We have also explained why it is a good idea to run a background check on yourself and recommended the best sites to use to do it.

Have you ever been surprised by what shows up on a driving background check? Have you ever missed out on a job because of a background check? Did you try running a background check on yourself in advance and if so how did this help you?

It is always helpful for our readers to learn about real-life experiences that can add to the advice we provide in these guides. So, why not share your stories with them using the comment box below.

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