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Criminal Background Check
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 Criminal Background Check 

The steps below will guide mortgage loan originators through the Criminal Background Check (CBC) process.

Getting Started: CBC

Step 1:  Am I required to complete a Criminal Background Check (CBC) in NMLS?

Yes, every mortgage loan originator (whether state-licensed or federally registered) is required to complete a CBC in NMLS.

The Criminal Background Check Authorization Request is required for submission of the application form (Form MU4 for state licensing, Form MU4R for federal registration).  Either an individual mortgage loan originator (MLO) or their employer may create the CBC Authorization Request through NMLS.

Step 2:  Scheduling a fingerprint appointment

Once an individual or employer has paid for the CBC request through NMLS, the MLO will be able to schedule a fingerprint appointment.  Go to Schedule a Fingerprint

NOTE: If you already have recent fingerprints in NMLS, you will not need to be reprinted.  NMLS can use the existing fingerprints that are on file. The option to use existing prints will only be available if the fingerprint records on file are less than 3 years old.  Due to FBI rules, individuals will need to provide new fingerprints when requesting a new Criminal Background Check if previously submitted fingerprints are more than 3 years old.  NMLS also offers employers the follow methods for providing MLO fingerprints to NMLS:

  1. Onsite group appointment - Fieldprint can arrange an onsite visit to accommodate large groups of MLOs for a fee to cover travel and set-up.  While it can be arranged for any size group, this typically makes sense if a company has 30 or more MLOs to have fingerprinted at one time.  For more information regarding onsite group appointments, see Group Fingerprint Appointments.
  2. Use existing equipment or network - NMLS recognizes that some institutions may have existing systems for fingerprint collections and a volume that makes it worthwhile to establish a direct connection.  Due to the technical and legal requirements necessary to facilitate such an alternative fingerprint submission process, NMLS can only offer this option under certain conditions.  See Submitting Fingerprints from an Existing Network for details.

NOTE: After authorizing a new Criminal Background Check and selecting to submit new fingerprints, fingerprints must be taken within 180 days. If fingerprints are not submitted within 180 days, the background check window will expire and a new Criminal Background Check will need to be authorized and paid for.

Step 3:  Viewing CBC results in NMLS

Fingerprints are automatically processed with results reported back to NMLS from the FBI usually within 48 hours of submission.  Some exceptions to this may occur if an individual has been sent to Name Check processing where results may not be returned from the FBI for up to 90 days.  CBC status can be viewed through Composite View from your individual account. 

NOTE: If the FBI determines that the prints are illegible, you will receive a system notification and be required to request a new CBC. 


Live Scan
$36.25  CBC Processing Fee
Paper Card Capture**
(if Live Scan is not selected)
$36.25  CBC Processing Fee
$10.00  Card Packet Fee
$46.25  Total

The CBC Processing Fee is assessed each time a new license request is submitted unless a previously submitted CBC Authorization is in a “Pending” status.

**Paper Card Capture costs more due to the manual processing of fingerprints. For more details see Electronic vs Paper.

Refund Policy

Payments collected through the NMLS are non-refundable.

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FBI-Required Privacy Act Statement


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