Can Landlords See Criminal Records in Illinois?

If you’re looking for a place to live in or around Chicago and you have a rap sheet, you might want to think about having your criminal record expunged or sealed

That’s because landlords are allowed to pull up your criminal background when they’re considering potential renters – and they’re legally allowed to tell you that you can’t rent from them. If you’re applying for Chicago public housing through the Chicago Housing Authority, they’ll definitely check your criminal background.

What to Do to Clear Your Record Before Renting

According to the Illinois Housing Empowerment Handbook, landlords can request all kinds of information on you if you fill out a rental application. Know that if you provide your Social Security number, they’re probably going to check your credit and your criminal history.

The Housing Empowerment Handbook says, “If you have ever been arrested, especially if you were not guilty, consider expungement or sealing of your records. Expungement will erase the charge, as if the charge never happened. Sealing a record will keep it confidential. Persons who have their record expunged may be more successful searching for housing and employment.”

If you’re thinking about the benefits of clearing your record, find out if you’re eligible for expungement. Even if you aren’t, you may be able to have your criminal records sealed.

For many people, it’s easier to work with a Chicago expungement attorney who understands Illinois law and what it takes to clear up a criminal record.

The good news is that if you can get your criminal record cleared, a potential landlord won’t be able to turn you down based on your past. Keep in mind that landlords will still check your credit history and your rental history, and they’ll be able to see if you’ve been evicted before as well.

Do You Need to Clear Your Criminal Record in Illinois?

Call us at 847-920-4540 or contact us online so we can help. Everyone deserves a fresh start – and we’ll do what we can to put yours within your reach.