(a) On November 1, 2000, every employer, child care facility, adult care facility, the Department of Human Resources, and child placing agency shall request the Alabama State Law Enforcement Agency to conduct a criminal history background information check for the following:

Terms Used In Alabama Code 38-13-3

  • adult: An individual 19 years of age and older. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • ADULT CARE FACILITY: A person or entity holding a Department of Human Resources license or approval or certification to provide care, including foster care, for adults. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • applicant: A person or entity who submits an application for license as a child care or adult care facility to the Department of Human Resources or a child placing agency, or an application for employment or for a volunteer position to a Department of Human Resources licensed child care or adult care facility. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • AUTOMATED SYSTEM: The computerized, automated fingerprint identification system (AFIS) maintained by the Alabama State Law Enforcement Agency that allows for a computer search of the in-state database for criminal history background check information maintained by the Alabama Criminal Justice Information Center (ACJIC). See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • care: The provision of care, treatment, education, training, instruction, supervision, or recreation to children, adults, or individuals with disabilities. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER: The Commissioner of the Department of Human Resources, the director of a county department of human resources, or the head of an employer covered by this chapter, but not specifically enumerated. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • CHILD CARE FACILITY: A person or entity holding a Department of Human Resources license, permit, or approval to provide child care, including foster care, under Chapter 7. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • CHILD PLACING AGENCY: A person or entity licensed by the Department of Human Resources under Chapter 7, issuing approvals to foster family homes and adoptive homes. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • Contract: A legal written agreement that becomes binding when signed.
  • CRIMINAL HISTORY BACKGROUND INFORMATION CHECK: The review of any and all records containing any information collected and stored in the criminal record repository of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Alabama Criminal Justice Information Center, and the Alabama State Law Enforcement Agency involving an arrest or conviction by a criminal justice agency, including, but not limited to, child abuse crime information as defined by 42 U. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • current: An individual who is presently employed, licensed, or approved, or working as a volunteer on November 1, 2000. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • elderly: An individual 65 years of age or older. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • employee: An individual currently in the service of an employer for compensation, full-time or part-time, and employed by contract or at will, in which the employer has the authority to control the person in the material details of how work shall be performed and when compensation shall be provided. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • employer: An individual, person, group of persons, association, partnership, corporation, limited liability company or partnership, business, or other entity which hires employees, has volunteers, or contracts with others to provide personnel to work with or provide care to children, adults, or individuals with disabilities in a caretaker setting. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • ESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS: The fundamental, not merely marginal, job duties of the employment as determined by a written job description or the judgment of the employer. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • following: means next after. See Alabama Code 1-1-1
  • individual: A natural person. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • LAW ENFORCEMENT: The sheriff's department of a county or the police department of a municipality. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • license: A license, permit, certification, approval, registration, or other form of permission required by law by whatever designation for a child care facility, adult care facility, child placing agency, foster parent or foster home, adoptive parent or adoptive home, or any other person or entity in which an individual has unsupervised access to children, the elderly, or individuals with disabilities. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • licensee: Holder of a license or approval and an adult household member whose residence is in the home in regard to child care and adult care facilities in a home setting. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • person: includes a corporation as well as a natural person. See Alabama Code 1-1-1
  • REASONABLE SUSPICION: Belief by a prudent person that reasonable articulable grounds exist to suspect that the employee's past or present behavior should be reviewed to determine if such behavior or conduct bears upon the individual's fitness to teach or supervise or have responsibility for the safety and well-being of children, the elderly, or persons with disabilities as defined in this chapter. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • report: A written statement of criminal history background information. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • state: when applied to the different parts of the United States, includes the District of Columbia and the several territories of the United States. See Alabama Code 1-1-1
  • volunteer: An individual who provides services without an express or implied promise of compensation, but shall not include the parent, family member, legal custodian, or legal guardian of a child, the elderly, or disabled individual in care. See Alabama Code 38-13-2
  • writing: includes typewriting and printing on paper. See Alabama Code 1-1-1
  • WRITTEN CONSENT: A signed statement by the applicant or employee containing all of the following:

    a. See Alabama Code 38-13-2

(1) An employment applicant, employee or volunteer of an employer, child care facility, adult care facility, or child placing agency.

(2) A current foster parent for a child or adult or adult household member of a foster family or applicant and an adult household member of a foster family seeking approval to operate as a foster parent or foster family home for a child placing agency or the Department of Human Resources. Unless otherwise provided in this chapter, no criminal history background information check shall be conducted on a current foster parent or household member of a foster family if a Federal Bureau of Investigation and Alabama State Law Enforcement Agency criminal history background information check has already been conducted under other law that meets the suitability criteria as provided in this chapter. Subsequent arrests or convictions of foster parents, or arrests or convictions entered into the automated system subsequent to the initial report, shall be sent by the Alabama State Law Enforcement Agency to the Department of Human Resources as provided in this chapter.

(3) An applicant or employee, with the exception of those individuals on employed status on November 1, 2000, in a position in the Department of Human Resources which requires unsupervised access to children, the elderly, or individuals with disabilities as one of the essential functions of the job. All current employees of the Department of Human Resources shall be subjected to a criminal history background information check upon reasonable suspicion. Criminal history background information checks shall be required for prospective and current personnel under contract with the Department of Human Resources or working with another entity under contract with the Department of Human Resources, students, mentors, and volunteers in positions requiring unsupervised access to children, the elderly, or persons with disabilities as one of the essential functions of the job. The Department of Human Resources shall pay any fees related to checks required pursuant to this subdivision.

(4) A current licensee or applicant for a license through the Department of Human Resources to operate a child care or adult care facility.

(5) An adoptive parent applicant for a child adoptive placement through the Department of Human Resources or child placing agency and any Department of Human Resources or child placing agency approved adoptive parent prior to entry of a final decree of adoption. Unless otherwise provided in this chapter, no criminal history background information check shall be conducted on a current adoptive parent or household member of an adoptive family if a Federal Bureau of Investigation and Alabama State Law Enforcement Agency criminal history background information check has already been conducted under other law that meets the suitability criteria as provided in this chapter. Subsequent arrests or convictions of adoptive parents, or arrests or convictions entered into the automated system subsequent to the initial report, shall be sent by the Alabama State Law Enforcement Agency to the Department of Human Resources as elsewhere provided in this chapter.

(b) An employer, child care facility, adult care facility, the Department of Human Resources, or a child placing agency may only request a criminal history background information check by its chief executive officer, or his or her designee authorized in writing and notarized, and law enforcement shall render assistance, including assistance in obtaining fingerprints required for submission of a request to the Alabama State Law Enforcement Agency.

(c) Every employee, volunteer or applicant, for employment or a volunteer position, licensee, Department of Human Resources adoptive parent applicant or approved adoptive parent, or applicant for a license to the Department of Human Resources to operate a child care or adult care facility shall submit two sets of fingerprints and sign a written consent to obtain the criminal history background information. Fingerprints shall not be required when a disability prevents a person from being fingerprinted. Disabilities preventing fingerprinting include the loss of both hands, severe scarring of all fingers, closed paralytic hands, and similar disabilities. In cases involving disability, a written consent to obtain available criminal history background information by name only shall be obtained. No one who fails or refuses to give written consent or submit fingerprints necessary to obtain criminal history background information may be employed, allowed to perform volunteer or other work, approved or issued a license, or allowed to retain a license or approval by the Department of Human Resources, an employer, child care facility, adult care facility, or child placing agency.

(d) Adult care facilities exempt from Department of Human Resources licensing shall not be required to comply with this chapter, but may voluntarily collect and forward two complete acceptable sets of fingerprints, the written consent, and nonrefundable fee from applicants to the Alabama State Law Enforcement Agency to request a criminal history background information check which shall be processed pursuant to this chapter. Licensed social workers conducting home studies may also request a criminal history background check which shall be processed pursuant to this chapter. The Department of Human Resources shall, prior to the disbursement of any subsidized child care funds, require all employees and applicants of legally operating child care facilities to submit verification of the application for a criminal history background check and the results thereof when obtained. Upon reasonable suspicion that the individual has a criminal conviction or has not had a criminal history background check conducted, the Department of Human Resources shall have the right to require employees of child care or adult care facilities to submit each application for a criminal history background check and the results thereof when obtained.

(Act 2000-775, p. 1775, §3; Act 2012-55, p. 92, §1; Act 2018-278, §2.)