Background Checks

Criminal Record Checks (CRC)

For teaching English in Korea purposes

Depending on your nationality background checks may be referred to as criminal record checks, police checks, police reports, basic disclosures or police clearance certificates.

CRC  Policies – All Nationalities


  1. All teachers must submit specific types of criminal record checks (CRC) from the designated issuing authority within their country of citizenship.
  2. CRCs issued through third party providers are not acceptable by Korean Immigration; meaning, you can NOT use a private company to obtain the CRC (exception: Approved channelers for American FBI checks). All background checks must come directly from the designated police department or government office/bureau that’s responsible for issuing the type of check Korean Immigration requires. CRCs that were ordered online and come as ‘print outs’ are NOT accepted by the Korean government.
  3. CRCs must have an issue date that’s within 6 months of the applicant’s visa application date. Outdated criminal record checks (older than 6 months) are not accepted by the Korean government. To avoid potential problems and delays people applying for the spring hiring session should have an October 1st (of the previous year) or later, issue date on their CRC. Similarly, people applying for the fall hiring session should have a March 1st (of the same year) or later, issue date on their CRC.
  4. IMPORTANT: Before sending your CRC to Korea for processing it MUST be authenticated with an Apostille seal certificate (note: Canadian teachers need to secure a consulate verification stamp as an alternative to the Apostille Seal). Refer to our Apostille pages for authentication procedures (USA Apostille or International Apostille).

American Criminal Record Check Requirements

Type of Check: Americans must submit national level FBI criminal record checks. These checks are formally called Identity History Summary Checks and there are no alternatives to this requirement (State level checks are NOT accepted by the Korean Immigration Office).

There are two ways to order the proper FBI check.

1ST METHOD – DIRECTLY FROM THE FBI: The FBI accepts paper fingerprint cards which need to be mailed in, or digital finger print cards which are submitted electronically. Using the paper fingerprinting option is not recommended – under any circumstances – because of the lengthy processing timeline (up to 16 weeks!). The digital fingerprinting option is substantially faster and checks requested this way are usually issued within 5 – 10 business days.

FBI Identity History Summary Check Page:

To order your check electronically from the FBI you will need to visit a government digital fingerprinting office. Go to and follow the steps under the “Obtaining Your Identity History Summary” section.

2ND METHOD – FROM AN APPROVED FBI CHANNELER: This is the method we recommend because it’s easier and faster than ordering it directly from the FBI.

IMPORTANT: There’s a difference between a channeler that assists with FBI checks and a ‘FBI Approved’ channeler. Only FBI Approved Channelers can assist you with checks that are accepted by Korean Immigration. Keep reading for details and advice.

Recommended Channeler: Accurate Biometrics

Note: Gone2Korea is not affiliated with Accurate Biometrics, nor do we collect a fee for referring people to their services. We recommend them because they’re fast, efficient and fairly priced. Furthermore, many of our American teachers have used their services in the past without problems or delays.

How to order an Identity History Summary Check using Accurate Biometrics

Phone: (866) 361-9944


  1. Download the Applicant Information Form as a PDF (there’s a sample form included).
  2. Enter your information electronically (i.e. type your information into the respective form fields using your computer or device). Triple check the information you entered to make sure it’s accurate.
  3. Print the completed form and sign the bottom and add the date.

Note: You can choose USPS First Class Mail service for $60 USD which will take 2-4 business days to process plus courier time (+4-5 days). Or, you can choose UPS Priority for $75 USD which takes 2-4 business days to process plus courier time (+2 days). You’ll need to include the amount you wish to pay on the payment section of the application form (where is asks you to enter ‘Total Amount to be Billed to Your Credit Card’). If you don’t have a credit card to use then you can obtain a money order, or cashier’s check, payable to ‘Accurate Biometrics’.


  1. Download the Fingerprint Card form [FD-258 card]. The form contains two fingerprint cards, you need to print both because 2 sets of prints are necessary.
  2. Read the instructions before entering your personal information (name, DOB, race, height, etc). Also, it’s imperative to add your personal information to both cards!
  3. Bring both fingerprints cards to an authorized fingerprinting provider. You can have your prints taken at one of the Accurate Biometric offices (if they’re close by), or you can have them taken by your local law enforcement agency, or by a licensed fingerprinting service. You cannot do the fingerprints yourself – the FBI won’t accept it – only police offices or licensed vendors can complete your fingerprint cards. Note: You’ll need to show the respective fingerprinting service a government issued form of ID
  4. (Optional) Print off the Accurate Biometrics checklist.
  5. Mail your documents to Accurate Biometrics. Make sure to use a priority mailing service, or first-class USPS, in order to get a tracking number. The documents you need to send will include:
  • Accurate Biometrics Application Form
  • Accurate Biometrics Credit Card Payment Form (or a cashier’s check, or money order)
  • Two (2) Fingerprints Cards [FD-258 Cards]
  • Checklist (optional)

Accurate Biometrics Mailing Address

Accurate Biometrics
Attn: Departmental Order
500 Park Boulevard, Suite 1260
Itasca, IL 60143

Imperative: Do NOT bend or folder the fingerprint cards! The FBI won’t process your request if there are paper creases on your fingerprints.

You will receive the hardcopy of your FBI Check in 3-7 business days (the timeline is dependent on the return mail option you selected).


Once you receive the physical background check you will need to send it to the US Department of State Office in order to have it authenticated with an Apostille – something Korean Immigration requires.

Please Note: The FBI and Accurate Biometrics do NOT offer Apostille authentication services. It’s a separate/independent step which can only be done by the DOS.

Click HERE for Apostille authentication procedures.


Canadian Criminal Record Check Requirements

Canadian teachers MUST secure National level FINGER-PRINT based checks from the RCMP. Name and DOB based checks or provincial level finger-print checks are not accepted by Korean Immigration.

Please be advised: All Canadians must have their original RCMP background check verified by the Korean consulate with a Consulate Verification Stamp – no exceptions. NOTE: Canadians cannot have their checks authenticated with an Apostilled seal because Canada is not a signatory of the Apostille treaty.

How do I request nationwide criminal background check from the RCMP? There are 2 ways to secure finger-print based checks from the RCMP.

  1. Electronic finger-print submission (recommended method)
  2. Paper finger-print card submission by registered mail

Gone2Korea advises all Canadians to secure their check via electronic finger-print submission. Electronic submission only takes 5-10 days to process and paper finger-print cards by registered mail can takes upwards of 2 months.

How do I submit electronic finger-prints to the RCMP?

  1. RECOMMENDED: Through a private finger printing service such as Clear Need.
  2. Through your local police station. Make sure to speak with the police office to confirm they have digital finger printing scanners available.

CRUCIAL: Please remember that name and DOB based checks are no longer accepted by the Korean authorities.

RCMP homepage

Australian Criminal Record Check Requirements

Australian checks are usually referred to as Police Checks or Police Certificates.

Australian teachers must submit Federal Level Police Checks; meaning, the check must constitute a nationwide search. Applicants can download the Australian National Police Check Application Form directly from the Australian Federal Police website:

Note: All Australians need to have their checks authenticated with an Apostille Seal. Refer to our International Apostille page for details.

British Criminal Record Check Requirements

The Korean authorities currently accept 4 different types of criminal record checks from British teachers – Basic Disclosures, Standard Disclosures, Enhanced Disclosures and Subject Access Reports.

Subject Access Reports take 40 days to process and standard or enhanced disclosures require extra paper work; therefore, Gone2Korea advises all British applicants to secure Basic Disclosures when possible (Basic Disclosures are cheaper, have a shorter processing period and are usually issued within 3 weeks of the application date).

How to order a Basic Disclosure: Simply visit the website and follow their easy step-by-step application instructions.

Note: All Brits need to have their check authenticated with an Apostille Seal. Refer to the International Apostille page of our site for details.

Irish Criminal Record Check Requirements

Background Checks in Ireland are usually referred to as: Police Check Certificates.

Best Method: You can secure Police Check Certificates (that are accepted by Korean Immigration) by contacting the Garda Police Station in your jurisdiction and requesting a Police Check Certificate of Character.

Note: All Irish need to have their check authenticated with an Apostille Seal. Refer to the International Apostille page of our site for details.

Garda Police homepage (

New Zealand Criminal Record Check Requirements

CRC’s are usually referred to as Police Clearance Reports in New Zealand. The Ministry of Justice does not issue Police Clearance Reports over the phone. In most cases, New Zealand teachers will need to download the proper form from their website ( and submit a written copy which has been signed and dated with an ink signature.

New Zealand teachers must submit Federal Level Police Clearances; meaning, the check must constitute a nationwide search.

Note: All New Zealanders need to have their check authenticated with an Apostille Seal. Refer to our International Apostille page for details.

South African Criminal Record Check Requirements

The South African Department of Foreign Affairs currently issues Police Clearance Certificates that are accepted by the Korean Immigration office:

South African teachers must have their checks authenticated with an Apostille Seal. Refer to our International Apostille page for details.