Instant Checkmate Background Checks Review

Rating: 7 / 10 (Very good)
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Instant Checkmate is a background check company that searches public records nationwide to provide detailed reports. Their checks include criminal records, old addresses, social media profiles, driving records, among others. Use their services to check up on old friends or screen an online date.

How is Instant Checkmate rated?

Breakdown

7/10
Company Reputation
7/10
Screening
7/10
Pricing
7/10
Customer Service

Overall Rating: 7 / 10 (Very good)

Instant Checkmate offers background checks for the use of individuals that include criminal records, address history, and social media profile, to mention a few. However, other background check companies provide more screenings. For employers looking to run background checks on applicants or employees, Instant Checkmate is NOT an option, because they are not FCRA-compliant. Additionally, their company reputation is rather spotty, which is liable to make consumers look elsewhere. But for users who are only looking to screen dates, find old schoolmates, or simply satisfy a nagging curiosity, Instant Checkmate may be acceptable. If this is you, beware of recurring credit card charges.

Instant Checkmate Screening Details

Screening - 7 / 10

Instant Checkmate searches public records to find criminal and arrest records, address histories, traffic violations, among other pieces of information. Their website separates their reports as Standard and Premium, with the Premium option adding information on civil actions, foreclosures, and even neighbors. They also search social media, which isn't done by other companies due to how difficult it is to find the correct social media profile. Other companies, however, offer many more searches.

Consumers should be aware, however, that Instant Checkmate's reports do not meet the requirements of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). This means they absolutely cannot be used to make hiring decisions or to check the background of potential tenants. Consumers who want background checks for these purposes must look for companies that are FCRA-compliant.
Legal Records
Federal/State Criminal
Civil Actions
Sex Offender Registry
Driving Record
Other Records
Social Media
Past Addresses

Instant Checkmate Company Reputation

Company Reputation - 7 / 10

Founded in 2010, Instant Checkmate is accredited and has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. However, reviews on their BBB profile are overwhelmingly negative. Customers complain that they are unable to cancel their memberships, that the information included in the reports is not accurate, and that the customer service hotline has excessively long wait times. More troublingly, some consumers claim their personal information, including criminal records, was used on marketing products. Furthermore, in 2015, the Federal Trade Commission filed a complaint against Instant Checkmate for issuing consumer reports in violation with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), including a "failure to... assure the maximum possible accuracy" of background check reports. To be clear, Instant Checkmate background checks are not FCRA-compliant and should not be used for employment and tenancy purposes.

Key Reputational Facts

Year Founded
2010
Number of BBB Positive Reviews
5
Number of BBB Negative Reviews
203
Trust Pilot Rating
3.0 out of 10
Verified Contact Info
Yes
Date Collected
2018-02-02

Certifications & Actions

Classified by FCRA as Consumer Reporting Agency
No
NAPBS Accredited
No

Instant Checkmate Pricing

Pricing - 7 / 10

Instant Checkmate offers two packages. The first gives customers access to one month of unlimited reports for $34.78, and the second provides three months of unlimited reports for $27.82. However, for this last package, customers are required to purchase three months upfront, which costs $83.47. They advertise Standard and Premium reports, but it is unclear if Premium reports have a cost in addition to the monthly subscription. Furthermore, a look at the fine print reveals that the subscription renews automatically. Customers who decide to go with Instant Checkmate should be aware that their credit card or PayPal account will automatically be charged every month until they decide to cancel their membership.
Free Report
No
Monthly Subscription
Yes
Plan 1 Name
1 month of unlimited reports
Plan 1 Monthly Price
$34.00
Plan 2 Name
3 months of unlimited reports
Plan 2 Price
$27.00
Annual Subscription
No

Instant Checkmate Customer Service

Customer Service - 7 / 10

Instant Checkmate claims to have a 24/7 customer service hotline. However, some customers claim they are unable to get in touch with them over the phone. They have a mobile app for Android, which allows customers to do searches on their phone or tablet.
24/7 Hotline
Yes
Contact Method
Phone
Email
Mobile App
Yes
FCRA Compliance Assistance
No

Company Profile

Full Name
Instant Checkmate Background Checks
Company Website
Mailing Address
3111 Camino Del Rio N, Suite 400, San Diego, CA, 92108

Top Rated
9.0 / 10
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