If you're looking to adopt, then you've likely already begun researching what steps you must take to get the process started. You've likely found that California and every other state in the union require that you undergo a background check before a child will be placed into your Riverside home.
When you submit to a background check, your caseworker will obtain records kept by the city, state and federal government. It's even likely that some of the databases used to perform this background check will pull up convictions in other states where you've lived.
In addition to checking the aforementioned databases, it's also likely that your caseworker will look you up in the California child abuse and neglect registry to make sure that you haven't previously hurt a child.
They'll also search for you in both the national and California sex offender registry. They'll expect you to be upfront about previous juvenile convictions as well as whether you've ever engaged in domestic violence.
Before the caseworker can initiate an investigation into your background, they'll need for you to provide them with your complete name, gender, Social Security number, date of birth and race. You'll also need to provide them with a copy of your photo identification so that they can verify that this information is accurate.
They'll also need for you to provide them with a signed release allowing them to request your criminal history along with two sets of fingerprints.
In many jurisdictions, a criminal conviction on an individual's permanent record doesn't automatically disqualify them from adopting or fostering a child. If the prospective parent has previously been convicted of a crime against a minor, a violent offense or a drug-related one, then their request may be denied though.
One of the reasons that states like California perform background checks on prospective parents is to make sure that children are in capable hands of adults who can give them the support that they need. If you're wondering how your criminal background may impact your ability to take a child into your home, an attorney can let you know.