How to Do a Background Check on a Nanny

Selecting a good and responsible nanny is essential. After all, this person is going to be caring for your child when you're not there to feed, clothe and care for him yourself. You shouldn't skimp on safety when it comes to selecting a nanny. You should perform a complete background check to learn whatever you can about the nanny and to ensure that the information she provides is accurate 1.

Inform a prospective nanny that you require a background check right from the start. Consider it a red flag if she refuses, notes Thomas Ruskin, president of the CMP protective and investigative group, in an October 2012 article. A nanny won't mind having you verify her information if she has nothing to hide. She'll understand why you want to be safe and thorough.

Contact the nanny's references and speak to them. Ask questions to get an idea of her character and to determine if the information she gave you is correct. Ask questions about her job performance and whether they were satisfied or not. If possible, arrange a meeting with her references or past clients in person.

Require a prospective nanny to fill out a thorough application with information including her name, driver's license number, past addresses for the last five years and any other information that you feel is relevant to the position.

Look up your nanny's name online. It is very easy to find all sorts of information about a person via the Internet, especially if she has accounts on social networking websites.

Hire a private investigator to look into the nanny's background 1. He can check criminal history, driving records and other information that you probably don't have the ability to discover on your own. Nanny agencies that you find online are another option. Some charge a flat fee to perform a background check 1. However, according Ruskin, these agencies just check databases and not criminal histories. If you opt to use such an agency be sure to question what their background check entails.


You can't be too careful when it comes to your child's safety. If you have a weird vibe or are uncomfortable for any reason with a potential nanny, listen to your gut and find someone else.