The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) maintains a central registry of reported cases of child abuse and neglect as required by Texas Family Code §261.002. The DFPS Central Registry includes information gathered during Child Protective Services (CPS), Child Care Licensing (CCL), and Adult Protective Services (APS) facility investigations of child abuse and neglect that resulted in a disposition of "reason to believe" for CPS and CCL cases or "confirmed and validated" for APS cases. Findings of abuse, neglect, or exploitation of an adult victim are not included in the Central Registry. If there are no findings, you will clear the Central Registry check.
You will not clear the Central Registry check if you:
- Have the role of designated perpetrator or sustained perpetrator in an investigation included in the registry; or
- Are involved as an alleged perpetrator in an open child abuse or neglect investigation being conducted by DFPS. A new Central Registry check may be requested at the conclusion of the investigation to determine if you were designated as a perpetrator of child abuse or neglect.
The Central Registry results will not include any child abuse or neglect case information if there was an investigation but abuse/neglect was ruled out or if it was unable to be determined.
The checks are conducted by DFPS' Background Checks employees. These DFPS employees are responsible for processing background checks for a variety of populations. Background Checks is part of the Operations division of DFPS.
The subject of the background check must read and complete Sections 1-5 of Form 2970 Request for Child Abuse/Neglect Central Registry Check. The form must be notarized. Please type or print clearly in ink. Incomplete or illegible forms will not be processed. Please do not send duplicate requests. Requests are processed in the order in which they are received.
The form can be submitted to Background Checks using any of the following methods:
- Email (preferred) Texas Abuse/Neglect Background Checks
- FAX (512) 339-5829
- Mail Background Checks TX Abuse Neglect BGC, M/C 121-7
PO Box 149030, Austin, TX 78714-9030
If you have questions, you may contact Background Checks by email.
The form can be found by clicking this link: Form 2970 Request for Child Abuse/Neglect Central Registry Check
It takes 5-10 business days to process a Child Abuse/Neglect Central Registry background check. Please note that this time frame may increase if the volume of these background checks increase.
There is not a fee.
DFPS only allows the individual who is the subject of the background check to request a Child Abuse/Neglect Central Registry Check. The subject of the request has the right to receive the results of this check and to share them with any third party in certain circumstances. A third party may submit the form on the subject's behalf but the form must be completed by the subject.
- For background check requests related to employment or volunteering, DFPS cannot release the cleared results to any person other than the subject.
- For all background check requests, if the check results in a match, DFPS will only send the results directly to the subject unless one of the following exceptions is met:
- Exception for a child custody or adoption evaluation: if the request is submitted for a court ordered child custody or adoption evaluation as defined by the Texas Family Code § 107.101 or 107.151, the court ordered evaluator may receive the results if proper identification if provided.
- Exception for Adam Walsh and CCDBG requests: a designee that is a representative of another state agency required to comply with the federal law of the Adam Walsh or CCDBG may receive the results if proper identification is provided.
Requests for basic case history from an out of state protective service or child welfare agency needed to assist an open investigation must be faxed on your state agency's letterhead to Statewide Intake: 800-647-7410 or 512-339-5900. Once Statewide Intake receives the fax, an intake specialist will call the requestor and provide the information. See 3423 Out-of-State Agency Requests for Case History (OOS Requests) for additional information.
If the request is not related to an open investigation, you must submit Form 2970 Request for Child Abuse/Neglect Central Registry Check. See FAQ #3 How do I request a Texas Child Abuse/Neglect Central Registry background check for more information.
DFPS is unable to provide any criminal history information, as DFPS does not have the statutory authority to access this information. Contact the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) for this information.
Findings of abuse, neglect, or exploitation of an adult victim are not included in the Child Abuse/Neglect Central Registry check that DFPS conducts. You may want to utilize the Employee Misconduct Registry (EMR) as a resource.
Here are some suggested steps that may assist with opening the form:
- Try opening the form using a different browser. (For example instead of using Internet Explorer (IE), try using Mozilla or Firefox.)
- If you receive a message stating the form could not be downloaded, and the message has an option to "Retry", the please click the "Retry" button.
- If you continue to experience this problem in (IE) even after clicking "Retry", consider applying an IE patch. The IE patch can be found on this page - https://technet.microsoft.com/library/security/ms14-010.
- Email Texas Abuse/Neglect Background Checks to request a form be sent to you.