Free Massachusetts Criminal & Arrest Record Look Up for Every MA County

Free Massachusetts Arrest Records & Criminal Records Search
Access Massachusetts Records: background checks, warrants, probation and parole, court records, and all criminal and arrest records.

Look up Massachusetts criminal and arrest records now by following the guide below or using free online resources; all you need is their first and last name.

Thanks to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), arrest and criminal records are made available for the public to review and RecordsPage streamlines this process by showing searchers exactly where and how to find an individual’s RAP sheet — also known as Records of Arrest and Prosecutions.

This guide will show anyone how to:

  • Locate, review and request copies of criminal records that originated in Massachusetts
  • Find recent arrests for every MA county
  • Determine if expunging or sealing a specific criminal record is possible in the state of Massachusetts
  • Find someone in a MA state or federal penitentiary (i.e. find prisoners)
  • Perform or fun a Massachusetts background check for personal or professional purposes
  • Look up and find if there are sex offenders in the area
  • Review and interpret MA laws surrounding anti-discrimination and public records

Massachusetts Criminal Records & Arrest Records: Are They Available to the Public?

The legislative branch of Massachusetts state government, the General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts outlines what is considered public record in General Laws, Part One, Title X, Chapters 66 and 66A. Massachusetts criminal records are considered public domain with some exceptions under this statute.

For example, juvenile records are automatically sealed from public view and can only be accessed by a court order and to a very limited, need-to-know audience. Victim information is also exempt from disclosure to the public to protect their identity and safeguard them.

Records that have been sealed or expunged by the courts are also not considered Massachusetts public records. Law enforcement can also withhold investigative reports until the case has been resolved in court to protect the integrity of the investigation.1

Federal laws also provide for access to public records through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). FOIA laws give access to any federal records that have been generated in the state of Massachusetts such as bankruptcies, federal criminal convictions, and federal prison incarceration records.

There are nine exemptions including certain law enforcement investigative reports and federal warrants.2

What’s Revealed on Criminal Records Searches vs Arrest Records Searches in Massachusetts?

An important point to consider when searching criminal records and arrest records is what is included in each. Arrest records in Massachusetts typically show a person was taken into police custody on a certain date, where they are housed, and the charges the person was arrested for.

This information is only part of an overall criminal record though and accessing these records is another story.

Criminal records in MA contain information about daily arrests or current arrests, but also includes disposition information on charges filed against the search subject. Name-based searches show all convictions in the state, and fingerprint-based searches show nationwide conviction history as well as arrest reports.3

Massachusetts criminal records have six levels of access established in the iCORI system used for record checks that determine what shows up on the report. The table below breaks down each level and what appears in a name-based search:

Access Level What Appears on the Report What is excluded
Personal Use Access Level All adult and youth (non-juvenile) convictions and non convictions (including pending matters), civil cases, and infractions. Sealed juvenile matters
Required Level 1 Access All adult and youth convictions and pending charges Sealed juvenile matters, civil cases, infractions, non convictions
Required Level 2 Access All adult and youth convictions and pending charges Sealed juvenile matters, civil cases, infractions, non convictions
Required Level 3 Access All adult and youth convictions and pending charges, non convictions Sealed juvenile matters, civil cases, infractions
Required Level 4 Access All adult and youth convictions and pending charges, non convictions, sealed case indicators. Civil cases and infractions
Standard Level Access Murder, manslaughter or sex offense convictions, misdemeanor convictions where disposition or release is less than five years before the record request, felony convictions where disposition or release is less and 10 years from the record request, and pending charges. Non convictions, misdemeanors older than 5 years from request, felonies older than 10 years from the request, sealed matters, juvenile cases and infractions.
Open Level Access Murder, manslaughter or sex offense convictions, misdemeanor convictions where disposition or release is less than five years before the record request, felony convictions where disposition or release is less and 10 years from the record request, and pending charges. Non convictions, misdemeanors older than 5 years from request, felonies older than 10 years from the request, sealed matters, juvenile cases and infractions, pending charges.

There are four different types of fingerprint-based searches in Massachusetts. Fingerprint-based checks are processed through SAFIS, Statewide Applicant Fingerprint Identification Services which can include an FBI rap sheet. The table below shows what shows up and what is excluded on each of these reports:

Access Level What Appears on the Report What is excluded
Department of Developmental Services Reports Adult arrests (in and out of state), all adult and youth convictions and non convictions, out of state convictions, non convictions, pending charges (adult), federal and international charges. Juvenile offenses, sealed in-state offenses, sealed out of state offenses if on fingerprint card, civil cases.
K-12 Education Employee Access Reports Adult arrests (in and out of state), all adult and youth convictions and non convictions, out of state convictions, non convictions, pending charges (adult), federal and international charges. Juvenile offenses, sealed in-state offenses, sealed out of state offenses if on fingerprint card, civil cases.
Department of Children and Family Access Reports Arrests in and out of state, adult and juvenile convictions and non convictions in and out of state, federal and international charges, civil matters in and out of state, sealed offenses in and out of state
Department of Early Education and Childcare Access Reports Arrests in and out of state, adult and juvenile convictions and non convictions in and out of state, federal and international charges, civil matters in and out of state, sealed offenses in and out of state Specific sealed juvenile cases, civil matters or infractions that are ordered to be undisclosed by court order.

Knowing what is available helps determine what kind of record check to request, but it is important to know where and how to access records.

Learn How To Find Recent Arrests in Massachusetts or Why Someone Is in Jail for Free

Many people are interested in why someone in their town was arrested or who is currently incarcerated in the local jail, but don’t know how to find recent arrests or where to find recent arrests. The process on finding arrest records in Massachusetts for both city and county arrests is as easy as following the step-by-step instructions below.

To learn who is in the county jail and find out what a friend or family was arrested at no cost, use the links in the table below for each specific county.

Otherwise, searchers can follow the steps listed below to find the same information:

  1. Using a search engine of choice, type “[name of the county or city] Massachusetts  jail inmate search” in the search bar.
  2. From the top 1-3 sites in the search returns, look for the official county jail website. This will be the local sheriff’s office and may be a .net, .gov or .us website; however, it may also be a .com or .org.
  3. Click the website link and look for a hyperlink on the page regarding inmate information. This is usually labeled inmate information or inmate data.
  4. Look for inmate search, search current inmates or inmate roster and click on this link if available.
  5. If no online directory link is published, look for the phone number of the sheriff’s office and call that number to ask if a person is being held in jail and why they are being held.

Most sheriff’s offices in Massachusetts do not publish online inmate rosters; therefore, it is necessary to call the sheriff’s office to learn if someone is in custody. The table below lists the phone number for each sheriff’s department with a jail and which counties are served by the jail in a neighboring county if they don’t have their own.

County Arrest Records Search in MA: (Massachusetts Mugshots & Inmate Search)

County jails are maintained by the sheriff’s office in Massachusetts and are how to find out someone’s charges in jail or who’s in jail. Below is a list of all county sheriff’s offices that operate a jail and host arrest records in Massachusetts:

County Jail Inmate Search* Phone Number Mugshots Available?
Barnstable County Sheriff’s Office
Barnstable supports inmates from Nantucket County too.
508-563-4300 X
Berkshire County Sheriff’s Office 413-443-7220 X
Bristol County Sheriff’s Office 508-995-6400 ext. 2535 X
Dukes County Sheriff’s Office 508-627-5173 X
Essex County Sheriff’s Office 978-750-1900 X
Franklin County Sheriff’s Office 413-774-4014 X
Hampden County Sheriff’s Office 413-858-0000 X
Hampshire County Sheriff’s Office 413-584-5911 X
Middlesex County Sheriff’s Office 978-667-1711 X
Norfolk County Sheriff’s Office 781-329-3705 X
Plymouth County Sheriff’s Office 508-830-6200 X
Suffolk County Sheriff’s Office 617-635-1100 X
Worcester County Sheriff’s Office** 508-854-1800 X

*Does not have an online search tool for current inmates, must call to inquire about incarcerated individuals.
**Has an online search portal to find current inmates with a name-based search.

County jails are the primary source of housing arrestees in Massachusetts. These facilities hold inmates arrested by city, state and county law enforcement agencies.

There is not a statewide mugshot database available to the public.

Find Anyone by Looking Up Recent Arrests in Massachusetts’ City Jails

Municipal, or city, police in Massachusetts use the nearest county jail to house individuals arrested in the police department jurisdiction. Knowing how to find out if someone was arrested or how to find out if someone is in jail after a municipal arrest can be done by doing the following:

  1. Open a search engine and type “Massachusetts [name of the city] jail phone number.”
  2. Find the official website for that police department in the list and click it. For example, when searching for Boston Police Department type Massachusetts Boston Police Department information phone number (this was the first website listed for this search).
  3. Click the link and scroll through the page until you find the contact section. This will list a non-emergency phone number for the department.
  4. Call the number listed and provide the name and date of birth (if known) to the department representative and ask where the person was transported for holding until trial or bond is posted.

How To Contact an MA Inmate in Jail & Bail Them Out (Steps To Post Bail in Massachusetts)

Knowing where someone is in jail is the first step in making contact or posting bail or bond in Massachusetts, and the next few paragraphs outline how to do this. Using the county sheriff’s office table above family and friends can find out bond information and learn about visitation or telephone contact with an inmate.

Additionally, for someone to find out how to post bond or make a phone call or visit, follow the steps above to :

  1. From a search engine type “[county name] Massachusetts jail contact an inmate”.
  2. Find the official county jail website in the search results and click the link. For example, when searching Plymouth county inmates, the searcher would type Massachusetts Plymouth county jail inmate contact, then look for this link to the webpage.
  3. Review the information provided on the page about who to contact an inmate, what is required for visitation and telephone calls, and what steps the person needs to take to visit such as a visitation application or background check.

Each jail sets their own visitation and contact policies and procedures, so it is important to study the information provided online before attempting to visit or call. When contact is made, the inmate can let the family member or friend know how much the bond is set, or if a bond is being denied at this time.

A screenshot of an empty for of Plymouth county visitor pre-approval request.
Source: Plymouth County Sheriff’s Department13

Bonds or bail must be posted at the jail where the individual is being detained or the law enforcement agency or court where the arrestee is being processed. Massachusetts does not allow commercial bail bondsmen to operate within the state.

Bail is set by a bail commissioner at the time of arrest or by the court if court is in session at the time of arrest, and bail for state charges must be paid in cash. An attorney can help arrestees and their family or friends navigate the bail process.4

How To Search & Look Up Criminal Records in Massachusetts

Massachusetts criminal records can also be requested through the state courts, but public access to information must be in person at the courthouse.  Searchers can find out how to look up criminal records at the local courthouse here.

The table below outlines what information is available via public access terminals:

Court Type Criminal Record Information Available
Municipal Court (Boston)
  • Order of Protection (Abuse Prevention)
  • Bicycle Infractions
  • Motor Vehicle Infractions
  • Smoking Infractions
  • Marijuana Infractions
District Courts
  • Order of Protection (Abuse Prevention)
  • Bicycle Infractions
  • Motor Vehicle Infractions
  • Smoking Infractions
  • Marijuana Infractions
Superior Courts
  • Bail Hearings
  • Criminal complaint reports
  • Any indictments
  • Transfer of probation

The clerk of court in each county is responsible for maintaining records of all hearings in that county, also called jurisdiction.

Find Criminal Records in Massachusetts by Searching County Court Records

The table below lists the physical address and phone number for each county’s superior clerk of court. Each clerk’s office houses the court records for all matters resolved in that area, and public terminals are available to search records.

Using the information in the table, go to the courthouse and enter the person’s first and last name in the public terminal to complete the search.5

If a printed copy is required, the reception desk worker will be able to help process the request, but there may be a small fee to cover the printing costs, and this can be accessed at the courthouse listed below where the matter was tried:

County Criminal Court Records Repository County Courthouse Address Phone Number
Barnstable Superior Clerk of Court 3195 Main Street
Barnstable Massachusetts 02630
508-375-6684
Berkshire Superior Clerk of Court 76 E Street
Pittsfield Massachusetts 01201
413-499-7487
Bristol Superior Clerk of Court 9 Court Street
Taunton Massachusetts 02780
508-823-6588
Dukes Superior Clerk of Court 81 Main Street
Edgartown Massachusetts 02539
508-627-4668
Essex Superior Clerk of Court 56 Federal Street
Salem Massachusetts 01970
978-744-5500
Franklin Superior Clerk of Court 43 Hope Street
Greenfield Massachusetts 01301
413-775-7400
Hampden Superior Clerk of Court 50 State Street
Springfield Massachusetts 01102
413-735-6016
Hampshire Superior Clerk of Court 15 Gothic Street
Northampton Massachusetts 01061
413-584-5810
Middlesex Superior Clerk of Court 200 Trade Ctr, Floor 2
Woburn Massachusetts 01801
781-939-2700
Nantucket Superior Clerk of Court 16 Broad Street
Nantucket Massachusetts 02544
508-228-2559
Norfolk Superior Clerk of Court 650 High Street
Dedham Massachusetts 02026
781-326-1600
Plymouth Superior Clerk of Court 52 Obery Street
Plymouth Massachusetts 02630
508-747-8400
Suffolk Superior Clerk of Court 3 Pembroke Sq
Boston Massachusetts 02108
617-788-8175
Worcester Superior Clerk of Court 225 Main Street
Worcester Massachusetts 01608
508-831-2300
A screenshot from icori commonwealth of Massachusetts department of criminal justice information services website's register as an individual page showing the choose account type section.
Source: iCORI14

The court system can provide records for that particular jurisdiction, but to get a complete statewide criminal history, the searcher will need to use the CORI system which is also the way to get statewide arrest records.

How To Obtain a Copy of Criminal Records in Massachusetts and Statewide Arrest Records in MA

A complete criminal history can be beneficial in making important decisions, and to obtain a statewide Massachusetts criminal records search, complete the following steps:

  1. Go to iCORI which is hosted by the Department of Criminal Justice Information Services.
  2. Register for an individual account or log in if an account already exists.
  3. Review the training materials and agree to the terms and conditions.
  4. Log into the account and click on the tab to add a record request.
  5. Complete the form that opens, add the record request to the shopping cart, then go to the cart to checkout and pay the $25 record fee.
A screenshot from the official website of the commonwealth of Massachusetts' criminal records check page with an arrow pointing at the request a name-based record check link.
Source: Mass.gov15

Once the record is available the account holder can view it in CORI. This system is updated by reports from law enforcement agencies and the state probation and parole records departments. Many people need to know if a person has an arrest record outside their local area, and the CORI results show arrest records in Massachusetts and complete criminal history.6

How Do You Find Out if Someone Is on Probation or Parole in Massachusetts?

Massachusetts does not release information about probation or parole status to the public without written consent of the individual on supervision. While CORI records can show disposition in cases which include probation, details are not included, and probation officers are prohibited from sharing information about individuals on supervision without the express written consent of the probationer.7

To illustrate just how many people are on probation and parole, the following image shows the combined total of probationers and parolees in Massachusetts, along with their ethnicities.

An image showing the map of Massachusetts with its total population of probationers and parolees with a bar graph placed on the bottom right corner presenting the number of probationers and parolees by ethnicity.
Source: Bureau of Justice Statistics

Persons wanting their own probation search for their own record can request it from their probation officer in writing.

A screenshot of the commonwealth of Massachusetts parole board third party authorization release form.
Source: Mass.gov16

Parole records can be requested through the Massachusetts Parole Board via mail by sending the request along with the third party authorization form, to the following address:

MA Parole Board
General Counsel Office
12 Mercer Rd
Natick Massachusetts 01760

Individuals wishing to obtain their own parole record can mail the written request to the address above or request it in person at the parole office where they check in or report to. There is not an online parolee database that can be accessed by the general public.8

A Guide on How To Seal or Expunge a Criminal Record in Massachusetts

When records are sealed or expunged, they are shielded from public view or erased completely, and here individuals can learn what they need to know about sealing or expunging a Massachusetts criminal record. Since a criminal record can be a huge obstacle for employment or licensure, it’s important to know how to expunge or seal a record, and this can be done by doing the following:

  1. Go to the official Massachusetts government website for expungements.
  2. Click “Find out if you can expunge your criminal record” to see if you are eligible.
  3. Review the section about expungement criteria.
  4. If the matter meets the requirements for a time-based expungement, complete the petition to expunge the record and mail it to the address listed on the form.
  5. For a non-time-based expungement, use the petition to expunge forms designed for those matters that are not time-sensitive. This petition must be filed with the clerk of court’s office in the county where the charges were filed and heard in court. Refer to the table above that lists courthouse physical addresses.
A screenshot of an empty form of a Massachusetts time-based petition to expunge.
Source: Courtforms Petition to Expunge Form17

Time based petitions are forwarded to the district attorney for review and a response or objection. When an objection by the DA is made, a hearing by a judge is held to determine if the record can be expunged.

If there is no objection, the record can be expunged without a hearing, but the judge can still request one if desired.

A screenshot of an empty form of a Massachusetts non-time-based petition for expungement.
Source: Mass.gov18

Non-time-based petitions are filed by the clerk of court and are set for a hearing by a judge to determine if all the criteria is met to erase the record.

The table below lists the criteria for time-based and non-time-based expungements:

Time Based Expungements Non-Time-Based Expungements
  • No more than 2 records
  • Death or bodily injury did not occur due to the criminal offense
  • Offense did not involve a weapon
  • Offense wasn’t committed on a disabled or elderly victim
  • Offense was not a sex offense
  • Offense isn’t for Operating Under the Influence
  • Doesn’t include a firearms violation
  • Doesn’t include a violation of a protective order
  • Isn’t a domestic violence offense
  • Isn’t a felony crime against a person
  • Seven years since the completion of sentencing has passed for felonies
  • Three years since the completion of sentencing has passed for misdemeanors
  • Someone falsely used the defendants identification
  • Someone used another’s identification without authorization
  • Defendant is victim of identity theft
  • Offense has been removed from the list of criminal offenses (statute making action a crime has been repealed)
  • Law enforcement made an error on the report or arrest
  • Witnesses or expert witnessed made an error when testifying
  • Court employees made an error in the record
  • Fraud on the court

Sealing a record in Massachusetts is not the same as expunging a record. A sealed record cannot be used for hiring or licensure decisions, and to seal a record, do the following:

  1. Go to the Massachusetts government record sealing website.
  2. Click on “Find out if you can seal your criminal record that’s at the top.
  3. If the record meets eligibility, complete the petition to seal conviction records form or the petition to seal non conviction records form, whichever applies to the situation.
  4. Petitions must be submitted in person. Conviction petitions are submitted to the Massachusetts Probation Services office in the county where the matter was heard. Non conviction petitions must be filed at the clerk of court’s office where the charges were filed.
  5. A hearing is held to determine if the records should be sealed. If the records are sealed, they will still be accessible to a limited audience, but will not be available to the general public and will not appear on a background check.
A screenshot of an empty form of a Massachusetts petition to seal conviction records.
Source: Mass.gov19

There are certain offenses that are not eligible to be sealed including sex offenses, certain firearms violations, crimes against the public (such as helping an escapee or perjury in a case), and bribes to an official or other state ethics violations.9

How To Locate Someone in Federal Prison & State Prisons in Massachusetts

The quickest way to locate an inmate in a Massachusetts prison searchers must use VINELink, and here one can find out how to conduct an inmate search. This is the only state approved third-party vendor to obtain information about Massachusetts prison inmates and the state’s preferred method of locating inmates.

To search VINELink and find out if the person who committed a crime against the searcher or a friend or family member is still in custody, do the following:

  1. Navigate to the Massachusetts government website.
  2. Click on “Online” to find the link for VINELink.
  3. Select Massachusetts from the drop down menu listing all the states that utilize VINELink.
  4. Choose name to do a name-based search.
  5. Enter the person’s first and last name, confirm the person searching is not a robot and click submit to search the records.
A screenshot from the official website of the commonwealth of Massachusetts' find an inmate in a Massachusetts prison page showing an arrow pointing at the find an inmate using vinelink button.
Source: Mass.gov20

Massachusetts has fifteen correctional facilities in the state. The table below lists the address and phone number for each.

MADOC Facility Address Phone Number
Boston Pre-Release Center 430 Canterbury Street
Roslindale Massachusetts 02131
617-822-5000
Bridgewater State Hospital 20 Administration Road
Bridgewater Massachusetts 02324
508-279-4500
Lemuel Shattuck Hospital Correctional Unit 180 Morton Street
Jamaica Plain Massachusetts 02130
617-522-7585
MASAC at Plymouth 1 Bump Pond Road
Plymouth Massachusetts 02360
508-291-2441
Massachusetts Treatment Center 30 Administration Road
Bridgewater Massachusetts 02324
508-279-8100
MCI Cedar Junction Rt A1 Main St
South Walpole Massachusetts 02071
508-660-8000
MCI Concord 965 Elm Street
Concord Massachusetts 01742
978-405-6100
MCI Framingham 99 Loring Drive
Framington Massachusetts 01701
508-532-5100
MCI Norfolk 2 Clark Street
Norfolk Massachusetts 02056
508-660-5900
MCI Shirley 104 Harvard Rd
Shirley Massachusetts 01464
978-425-4341
North Central Correctional Institution 500 Colony Road
Gardner Massachusetts 01742
978-371-7941
Old Colony Correctional Institution 1 Administration Road
Bridgewater Massachusetts 02324
508-279-6000
Pondville Correctional Center 1 Industries Drive
Norfolk Massachusetts 02056
508-660-3924
Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center 1671 Shirley Rd
Lancaster Massachusetts 01523
978-514-6500

Inmate inquiries can be done either by calling the Department of Corrections inmate information line at 866-277-7477 or using VINELink, but the information is limited and does not include a complete criminal history for the inmate. Again, Massachusetts prefers individual search for inmates using the VINELink system first.10

Massachusetts is home to one federal prison and a search for inmates at this facility can be made through the United States Bureau of Prisons (BOP) online inmate search portal.

A screenshot from federal bureau of prisons website's find federal inmates by name page showing an empty find by name search form.
Source: Federal Bureau of Prisons21

Searches can be completed by name or BOP registration number. Search results include those who are currently incarcerated and those that were previous in custody but have been released.

Those currently in custody will show the facility where they are located in blue in the list.11

How To Check for Arrest Warrants in Massachusetts (MA Warrant Search)

Warrants are issued when a person fails to appear in court or may be considered a flight risk or particularly dangerous to the general public due to the nature of the crime, here you can find out how to look for active warrants in the state. Warrants are not always readily available to the public in Massachusetts, and are not typically included in CORI background checks, but can show up in SAFIS checks.

Massachusetts law enforcement encourages those with an active warrant to turn themselves in and resolve the matter, and to see if someone has an active warrant out for their arrest in Massachusetts, do the following:

  1. Open a search engine and type “[county name] county Massachusetts warrant search.”
  2. Open the first official law enforcement website for that county that appears and see if there is a warrant list or most wanted list on the website. For example, if searching ” Massachusetts Norfolk county warrant search” the Norfolk County Sheriff’s Office was at the top of the search results. A search of the Norfolk County sheriff’s office to see if warrants are published will show there is not a link.
  3. When an agency does not have a warrant list or link online, call the phone number listed on the website to inquire about active warrants.

It is important to know that law enforcement may or may not disclose if there is an active warrant. Some will publish a warrant list or reveal there is one as an encouragement to the alleged offender to turn themselves in and resolve the matter.

A screenshot from Norfolk County sheriff's office website's homepage showing an arrow pointing at the phone number.
Source: Norfolk County Sheriff’s Office22

Again, warrants can appear on a fingerprint based or SAFIS background check and there are several times a SAFIS check will be requested. Warrants are one way of how do i know if i have been charged with a crime.

A Glance at Background Checks in Massachusetts

Several government agencies or organizations require a background check for individuals. The table below lists the agency and what is covered in the background report:

Agency That Performs or Requires Background Checks Screening Reasons
Department of Criminal Justice Information Services
  • Employment Screenings, name-based and fingerprint-based screenings
  • Volunteers
  • Licensing
  • Housing
Department of Developmental Services (DDS)
  • Support center employees
  • Family support service workers
  • Behavioral technicians
  • Self directed assistance workers
  • Deaf and hard of hearing aides
  • Respite and in-home care workers
Office of Educator Licensure
  • K-12 teachers
  • Teacher assistants
  • Volunteers
  • Administrators
  • School support staff
Department of Children and Families
  • Social workers
  • Foster care providers
  • Adoptions
  • Adult care facilities
  • Volunteers
Department of Early Education and Care
  • Childcare workers
  • Volunteers
  • Pre-school workers
Professional Licensing and Permits
  • Architects
  • Contractors
  • Home inspectors
  • CDL holders
  • Rideshare providers
  • Bus drivers
  • Tow-truck drivers
  • Pesticide workers
  • Commercial fishermen
  • Nursing
  • Pharmacists
  • Chiropractors
  • Dietitians
  • Hearing aid providers
  • Physician assistants
  • Drug control program providers
  • Genetic counselors
  • Respiratory care therapists
  • Podiatrists
  • Optometrists

When these agencies conduct or require a background check it is mainly to make sure the candidate will not be a danger to others and can perform the essential duties of the position. Disqualifying offenses include things such as sex offenses, violent felonies or crimes that go against the public trust.

How To Check Massachusetts’ Sex Offender Registry for Nearby Predators

Sex offenders are those convicted of especially horrible crimes against individuals and most are required to register in the state as a sex offender for a period of time up to the person’s natural life, and how to search the registry is seen here. To search the Massachusetts sex offender registry, which includes misdemeanor and felony registry for sex offenses, do these steps and learn if someone in your life has been convicted, or if there are registered sex offenders in your neighborhood:

  1. Go to the Massachusetts sex offender registry.
  2. Click on “Search for sex offenders via public website” near the bottom.
  3. Read the disclaimer and accept the terms and conditions.
  4. Verify that the searcher is not a robot and click proceed.
  5. Enter the offenders last name followed by all or a partial first name and click search. Searches can also be conducted with just a last name.
  6. Find the record that matches the subject of the search and click the subject’s name to see more details.
A screenshot from the official website of the commonwealth of Massachusetts' sex offender registry board page showing an empty search form for level two and level three sex offenders.
Source: Sex Offender Registry Board (SORB) Public Website23

Information included on the Massachusetts sex offender registry include:

  • Offender’s name and aliases
  • Year of birth
  • Gender
  • Physical description
  • Mugshots
  • Work and home address (or last known address)
  • Level of offender registration
  • Offenses the person was convicted of.

The sex offender registry also shows those who are currently incarcerated and those who are in violation of the registry. Offenders listed are those that were convicted of a sex offense in Massachusetts and those convicted in other states that now reside in Massachusetts.12

Laws on Accessing Massachusetts Criminal Records & Arrest Records

Accessing criminal records in MA is subject to the laws regarding what can be disclosed and how it can be used. Massachusetts code General Laws, Part One, Title X, Chapters 66 and 66A makes criminal and arrest records in Massachusetts public record; however, there are limitations on release of records.

Massachusetts was among the first states to enact a ban the box law prohibiting inquiring about criminal history on applications. Per Chapter 69 of the Massachusetts codes, in addition to banning the box during the application process, misdemeanors more than 3 years old cannot be used in making hiring or housing decisions, employers cannot ask about sealed or expunged cases.

Therefore, employers can only inquire about criminal history once an interview has been scheduled or completed.

Chapter 151B of the Massachusetts statutes protects workers from unlaw use of criminal records to disqualify applicants in a discriminatory manner. For example, criminal records cannot be used to make hiring decisions when it is used to disadvantage a protected class of people based on race, gender or other protected classification.

Federal laws that protect Massachusetts workers or those seeking to rent a home or apply for credit include the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) which limits credit history and non conviction history to a seven year lookback period, and enforcement of federal antidiscrimination laws through the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). FCRA guidelines also limit how commercial people finder search sites can access and disclose records.

Searching records in Massachusetts can be a complex matter, but this free guide can take the mystery out of the process. The information here can be used to search Massachusetts criminal records to use in making informed decisions about a potential tenant, employee. loved one or friend.


References

1Chapter 66 PUBLIC RECORDS. (n.d.). Massachusetts Legislature. Retrieved December 29, 2022, from <https://malegislature.gov/Laws/GeneralLaws/PartI/TitleX/Chapter66>

2Your Right To Federal Records. (n.d.). GSA.gov. Retrieved December 29, 2022, from <https://www.gsa.gov/cdnstatic/Your_Right_to_Federal_Records.pdf>

3Criminal record checks. (n.d.). Mass.gov. Retrieved December 29, 2022, from <https://www.mass.gov/service-details/criminal-record-checks>

4How Do I Get Someone Out of Jail in Massachusetts? (n.d.). Law Office of Matthew W. Peterson. Retrieved December 29, 2022, from <https://mwpetersonlaw.com/how-do-i-get-someone-out-of-jail-in-massachusetts/>

5Search Court Dockets, Calendars and Case Information. (n.d.). Mass.gov. Retrieved December 29, 2022, from <https://www.mass.gov/search-court-dockets-calendars-and-case-information>

6WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT MASSACHUSETTS CRIMINAL RECORDS. (2019, March 15). Mass.gov. Retrieved December 29, 2022, from <https://www.mass.gov/doc/cori-booklet/download>

7Learn about accessing probation information. (n.d.). Mass.gov. Retrieved December 29, 2022, from <https://www.mass.gov/service-details/learn-about-accessing-probation-information>

8Request Individual Parolee Records. (n.d.). Mass.gov. Retrieved December 29, 2022, from <https://www.mass.gov/how-to/request-individual-parolee-records>

9Are there some crimes that can never be sealed? (n.d.). MassLegalHelp. Retrieved December 29, 2022, from <https://www.masslegalhelp.org/cori/unsealable-crimes>

10Find an inmate in a Massachusetts prison. (n.d.). Mass.gov. Retrieved December 29, 2022, from <https://www.mass.gov/how-to/find-an-inmate-in-a-massachusetts-prison>

11BOP: Federal Inmates By Name. (n.d.). Federal Bureau of Prisons. Retrieved December 29, 2022, from <https://www.bop.gov/mobile/find_inmate/byname.jsp>

12MA Sex Offender Registry. (2021, October 25). https://sorb.chs.state.ma.us/sorbpublic/standardSearchforSexOffenders.action?_p=PXgnGplB8Gxibuit1g3ck1BRcDbTQxhznvdMMRYNNu4. Retrieved December 29, 2022, from <https://sorb.chs.state.ma.us/sorbpublic/standardSearchforSexOffenders.action?_p=PXgnGplB8Gxibuit1g3ck1BRcDbTQxhznvdMMRYNNu4>

13Visitor Pre-Approval Form / Request to Visit Questionnaire.” Plymouth County Sheriff’s Department. Accessed 3 May 2023. <https://www.pcsdma.org/Forms/483%20PCCF%20rtv.pdf>

14iCORI.” iCORI. Accessed 3 May 2023. <https://icori.chs.state.ma.us/icori/ext/global/landing.action?page=1&m=presentLanding&bod=1683059492380>

15Criminal record checks.” Mass.gov. Accessed 3 May 2023. <https://www.mass.gov/service-details/criminal-record-checks>

16The Commonwealth of Massachusetts.” Mass.gov. Accessed 3 May 2023. <https://www.mass.gov/doc/third-party-authorization-cori-release/download>

17Petition to Expunge Form. Accessed 3 May 2023. <https://courtforms.jud.state.ma.us/publicforms/PROB0002>

18PETITION FOR EXPUNGEMENT Trial Court of Massachusetts.” Mass.gov, 20 December 2018. Accessed 3 May 2023. <https://www.mass.gov/doc/petition-for-expungement-form/download>

19Petition to Seal.” Mass.gov. Accessed 3 May 2023. <https://www.mass.gov/doc/petition-to-seal-conviction-records-form/download>

20Find an inmate in a Massachusetts prison.” Mass.gov. Accessed 3 May 2023. <https://www.mass.gov/how-to/find-an-inmate-in-a-massachusetts-prison>

21BOP: Federal Inmates By Name.” Federal Bureau of Prisons. Accessed 3 May 2023. <https://www.bop.gov/mobile/find_inmate/byname.jsp>

22Norfolk County Sheriff’s Office | Home. Accessed 3 May 2023. <https://www.norfolksheriff.com/>

23Sex Offender Registry Board (SORB) Public Website. Accessed 3 May 2023. <https://sorb.chs.state.ma.us/sorbpublic/standardSearchforSexOffenders.action?_p=PXgnGplB8GzhgWpejdj9BqnLV3S8qY1mnvdMMRYNNu4>