Alabama Applicant Fingerprinting Services FAQ's

 

1) Why am I required to have a background check?

Effective July 21, 2002, an applicant for certification, licensure, or an applicant employed by a local school system or nonpublic school who will have unsupervised access to children in an educational environment and who has not completed a background check since July 1, 1999, as required by the Alabama Child Protection Act of 1999, shall be required to be fingerprinted for a criminal history background check through the Alabama Bureau of Investigation (ABI) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation pursuant to Act 2002-457.

2) Do I need to be fingerprinted again if I have already completed a background check?

Under current requirements, if you have completed an Alabama Bureau of Investigation (ABI) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) criminal history background check through the Alabama Department of Education and your fingerprint results are on file, you are not required to complete a new criminal history background check for employment purposes. An individual may verify that their criminal history background check results are on file with the Alabama Department of Education by visiting the Teacher Certification Portal at http://tcert.alsde.edu/Portal/Public/Pages/SearchCerts.aspx.

3) How do I verify that the Alabama Department of Education has received my background check results?

An individual may verify that their criminal history background check results are on file with the Alabama Department of Education by visiting the Teacher Certification Portal at http://tcert.alsde.edu/Portal/Public/Pages/SearchCerts.aspx .

4) I am an out-of-state applicant for certification, can I purchase my own ink and fingerprint myself using the cards provided?

No; Fingerprinting should only be conducted by officials properly trained to take acceptable fingerprints. Fingerprint card submissions that do not meet the required specifications will not be processed by the contractor for the Alabama Department of Education.

5) If I completed an Alabama State Department of Education background check in the past do I need to be fingerprinted again?

If you completed both an ABI/FBI background check through the Alabama State Department of Education for the purposes of attaining 1) employment in a public or private school, 2) a professional educator certificate, 3) a substitute teacher license or 4) admission to a teacher education program in the state of Alabama you will not need to be fingerprinted. If you have questions regarding your fingerprint status, please contact the Alabama State Department of Education, Teacher Education and Certification office for further information at (334) 694-4557.

6) I recently completed the fingerprint process through Gemalto Cogent. How do I know if my results have been sent to the State Department of Education?

All questions regarding the transmission of your fingerprints should be directed to the Gemalto Cogent Alabama Help Email (alhregistration@gemalto.com).

7) Once I complete the fingerprint process through Gemalto Cogent how long will it take for the results of the background check to return?

Results of the background check will be reported to the Alabama State Department of Education usually within 48 hours of initial processing. Do not contact Gemalto Cogent or the fingerprint sites with questions regarding background check results. All inquiries regarding the results of the background check should be addressed to the Alabama State Department of Education, Teacher Education and Certification office. If you have questions regarding your fingerprint status, please contact the Alabama State Department of Education, Teacher Education and Certification office for further information at (334) 694-4557.

8) Where are the fingerprint locations in my area?

The fingerprint locations established in Alabama can be found on the Gemalto Cogent web page for Alabama under the Print Site Locations tab.

9) What should I bring with me to the fingerprint site and what are the valid forms of identification?

You must be registered first before proceeding to a fingerprint site.You may register online on the Gemalto Cogent Alabama Website. You will receive a REGISTRATION ID (REG ID) at the completion of your online registration. Bring your REG ID and a qualified State or Federal photo ID to the fingerprint site. See What to bring for a list of approved ID types. Applicants cannot be processed if they are unable to produce acceptable identification.


Gemalto Cogent requires current, valid and unexpired picture identification documents. As a primary form of picture identification, a state-issued driver’s license may be presented by an applicant when being fingerprinted.
For those applicants without a driver’s license, a state identification card may be presented if the state’s identification card standards are the same as for the driver’s license.
In the absence of a driver's license applicants may provide one or more Secondary Documents including:

Secondary Documentation must be supported by at least two of the following:

10) Can I bill my background check to my employer?

Provisions have been made that would allow billing of an employer to occur. The employer must download an AGENCY BILLING AGREEMENT and submit a completed copy to Gemalto Cogent. Once the employer has been approved for billing, an Agency Billing ID (ABID) will be issued to the employer. An ABID entered during applicant registration will allow the transaction to be billed to the employer. In most cases an employer with an ABID number will be responsible for registering their own applicants. Speak with your employer to determine if they intend to make the billing of your background check possible. Billing accounts must be established prior to sending applicants to a fingerprint site.

11) Do I have to schedule an appointment to be fingerprinted?

In most cases, no appointments are required. Simply walk-in during established fingerprint hours. In all cases applicants should check the Gemalto Cogent web page for the fingerprint times of all sites as hours may change. You must be registered with Gemalto Cogent before being fingerprinted.

Fingerprint collection sites work on a first come, first serve basis. Be advised that during the initial few weeks of the program, fingerprint traffic may be heavy. Plan your visit to fingerprint locations accordingly. Do not send large groups of employees at one time. Plan to send employees to print locations over weeks, not hours. Contact the fingerprint site nearest you if you require a large group of employees to be printed. Ask the fingerprint site how they want to handle the processing of prints.

12) How do I know my personal data is secure?

Your personal data traveling from the fingerprint equipment is comprehensively secured and regulated by both Gemalto Cogent and State and Federal regulations governing the use of that data. The Gemalto Cogent statewide fingerprint service is housed within a secured network that is protected by firewall devices configured explicitly to allow only permissible protocols and traffic. Gemalto Cogent ensures that all of the submissions sent from the fingerprint system adhere to both the FBI's and the Alabama Bureau of Investigation's security requirements.

All communication traffic to and from the fingerprint machine is either encrypted or conducted through encrypted ports.

13) I still have additional questions, who can I contact for additional information?

For answers to additional questions regarding teacher policy and/or results, contact the Alabama Department of Education, Teacher Education and Certification office at (334) 694-4557.
If you are unable to register online or have questions, we may be able to assist you over the phone at 1-866-989-9316.
If you have general questions, please submit them via email to alhregistration@gemalto.com.
If you have questions about a specific technical issue related to a fingerprint scanner or computer, please submit them via email to altechsupport@gemalto.com

14) What information is contained in a background check report?

Background check reports (criminal history background check or rap sheet) list information taken from fingerprint submissions retained by the state/FBI in connection with arrests. In some instances the report also contains details of: federal employment, naturalization, or military service. If the fingerprints are related to an arrest, the report includes: the name of the department that submitted the fingerprints to the FBI, date of arrest, arrest charge, and the disposition of the arrest. All arrest data is obtained from fingerprint submissions, disposition reports and other reports submitted by agencies having criminal justice responsibilities.