U.S. Embassy Seoul cannot provide background checks or fingerprinting services, nor can the Embassy authenticate background checks or health certificates. Korean Immigration informed the Embassy on July 17, 2008, that they will no longer accept criminal records checks provided by an on-line service as some states and private companies are able to do. Korean Immigration will only accept an FBI criminal records check.
Local Police Check: Contact your local police department where you reside or last resided in the United States, request that the police conduct a criminal records search and provide you with a document reflecting that there is no history of a criminal record. Local police departments may require your personal appearance in order to conduct the search.
FBI Records Check: The Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS) Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) centralizes criminal justice information and provides accurate and timely information and services to local, state, federal, and international law enforcement agencies, the private sector, academia, and other government agencies. For more detailed information on how to submit your criminal background check, please review the FBI website.
The Korean National Police Agency informed the U.S. Embassy that many larger police stations in Korea should be able to provide fingerprint services without charge. Please call your local police station to verify hours and procedures. You may have to go to another police station if your local police station does not have the necessary equipment or staffing. Alternatively, a good resource for fingerprints is the local immigration office in your city/region or the nearest local government office (“gu” office). Please visit the Korean National Police Agency’s official website to find a local police station closest to your residence.
The U.S. Embassy cannot offer any apostille services. An apostille is a certification that a document has been “legalized” or “authenticated” by the issuing agency through a process in which various seals are placed on the document.
The CJIS Division will authenticate U.S. Department of Justice Order 556-73 fingerprint search results for international requests by placing the FBI seal and the signature of a division official on the results if requested at the time of submission. Documents prepared in this way may then be sent to The U.S. Department of State, Office of Authentications by the requester to obtain an apostille if necessary. This procedure became effective on January 25, 2010 and will apply only to documents finalized after that date. Requests to authenticate previously processed results will not be accepted. This procedure replaces the letter formerly provided by the CJIS Division that indicated the service was not provided.