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How long does an FBI background check really take?
« on: April 08, 2014, 02:12:35 pm »
I originally planned to work in June/July, but I am seeing some very good positions in May as well. I was wondering how long your background check took to clear.


  • country09
  • Expert Waygook

    • 653

    • January 05, 2011, 10:04:21 am
Re: How long does an FBI background check really take?
« Reply #1 on: April 08, 2014, 02:19:07 pm »
Depends on how busy they are but the estimated time is usually 90 days so plan for that. You will also need to plan for an additional 2 weeks after you receive the CBC back. It takes about 2 weeks to send the documents to the State Department for appostille. You can of course expedite the process through channelers but make sure you do your proper research first to make sure they are approved by the FBI and Korea.

If you are looking to come in May I would start the process immediately and look at ways to expedite the process.


  • Pizza
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    • April 03, 2014, 02:42:34 pm
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Re: How long does an FBI background check really take?
« Reply #2 on: April 08, 2014, 02:23:56 pm »
My one piece of advice for anyone applying to teach in Korea is to get the paper work done as early as humanly possible. I sent my fingerprints to the FBI 4 months in advance. After 1 month, I contacted them and they claimed they never received it! 2 months, 3 months.....I Had to do the whole process over again. I'm sure my case isn't common....but still, give yourself plenty of time with ALL of your paperwork.

Because of this mishap, I was skipped over for a job in Busan. Had to take a job in a more rural area instead.


  • specter13
  • Expert Waygook

    • 794

    • November 29, 2010, 10:00:26 pm
    • Seoul South Korea
Re: How long does an FBI background check really take?
« Reply #3 on: April 08, 2014, 02:26:14 pm »
I would also recommend sending in multiple sets of fingerprints in case they can't use one of them.

I remember one person who slacked on the process sent in one, they were unreadable and he had to leave Korea because he couldn't get his background check in time.


  • amgoalng
  • Expert Waygook

    • 720

    • August 31, 2012, 08:00:20 am
    • Gobuk, near Seosan, closer to Haemi
Re: How long does an FBI background check really take?
« Reply #4 on: April 08, 2014, 02:35:05 pm »
It also depends on where you are from.  Travel time can add to it.  If you live out east, it is recommended you drive to their office and get it done there (from what I recall.)  I sent  my stuff in I think February.  I got it back in April.  However, if you are going through a recruiter, as long as you inform them you have sent in the paper work, they will try to work something out.  If it is any consolation, usually doing the FBI check is the longest, most annoying part of the process.  I got it back in late April, had an interview in May and June, and had a contract in the beginning of July.

Oh!  Don't forget to have a copy of your diploma apostilled as well!  I added a week to the process because I forgot about it.  Do it now while you wait.  But as for me, I had an interview in June, heard back in a little less than a week, sent in the paperwork, got a contract back, and was out of America in August.  Also, because I have read people doing this when they get to Korea:  DO NOT GIVE YOUR PASSPORT TO ANYBODY AT ANY TIME!!!!!!!!  Make copies, they can have the copies if they need them.  Good Luck!
(I failed the first interview.)


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Re: How long does an FBI background check really take?
« Reply #5 on: April 08, 2014, 02:51:22 pm »
I think you can check the progress of your report after 2 weeks (maybe 4 weeks?) So, I'd check the progress as soon as you can. It's definitely possible...just depends on how busy the FBI is right now I guess. Hope you get it soon.


  • country09
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    • 653

    • January 05, 2011, 10:04:21 am
Re: How long does an FBI background check really take?
« Reply #6 on: April 08, 2014, 02:53:38 pm »
I do not know of a way to really check on the status. You may be able to contact the FBI and figure it out. I always just payed attention to my credit card. Once it was charged I knew I would be getting it back soon. Look at services for appostille with the State Department.

Also talk to your recruiter and let them know about the CBC and see what they say. I do not think you will have it in time for May if you sent it in March but you should get it back to Korea in June no problem. That is if your fingerprints are accepted.


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Re: How long does an FBI background check really take?
« Reply #7 on: April 08, 2014, 03:15:47 pm »
If you go to the FBI website, it gives you an estimate of how long the check will take (not counting mail time).


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Re: How long does an FBI background check really take?
« Reply #8 on: April 08, 2014, 03:23:31 pm »
Yea, they lost my fingerprints, so I can't give you a good answer!


  • country09
  • Expert Waygook

    • 653

    • January 05, 2011, 10:04:21 am
Re: How long does an FBI background check really take?
« Reply #9 on: April 08, 2014, 03:29:38 pm »
If you go to the FBI website, it gives you an estimate of how long the check will take (not counting mail time).
I saw 22 days, but compared to what some people have been saying, that seems far too optimistic haha.

I have done it twice while being in Korea. Each time it took a little over 3 months from sending it and then receiving the final documents ready to be given to my POE. Both times I started it in late November and received it back in late February. That may be a busy time for FBI checks I do not know though.

My advice, since the check is out of your hands at the moment, is to find out what your options are with your recruiter and how this will affect your job if you look to take one in May.