In April of 2020, Hire Image reported that under the Massachusetts state of emergency issued due to the pandemic, the Department of Criminal Justice Information Services (DCJIS) issued an emergency regulation where CORI requestors could verify the applicant’s identity via teleconference in cases where they were unable to verify in person or by a notary.

The Governor recently issued an order announcing the termination of Massachusetts’s state of emergency, effective June 15, 2021. Any CORI requests formerly verified via teleconference between April 9, 2020 and June 15, 2021 must now also be verified in person or via notarized form. This re-verification must be completed no later than July 9, 2021.

The DCJIS also updated the CORI regulations as of June 11, 2021. The updated regulations can be found here. Below is the exact text of the section regarding identification verification:

803 CMR 2.00

Section 2.11

(5) In order to verify the identity of a subject and to comply with 803 CMR 2.11(1)(b), one of the following methods shall be used:

  • A requestor shall verify a subject’s identity by examining in person a suitable form of government-issued identification containing a photograph of the subject. Acceptable types of government-issued identification are:
  1. a passport;
  2. a driver’s license issued by any federal, state, or territorial government of the United States;
  3. an identification card with a photograph issued by any federal, state, or territorial government of the United States;
  4. a permanent residency card issued by the U.S. Government;
  5. a military identification card issued by the U.S. Government;
  6. Native American Tribal documents; and
  7. other forms of documentation as determined by DCJIS.

(b) If a subject does not have an acceptable form of government-issued identification, a requestor shall verify identity by examining in person either the subject’s birth certificate or social security card.

(c) If a subject is younger than 18 years old at the time of verification and cannot be verified by any of the documents identified in 803 CMR 2.11(5)(a) and/or (b), then the subject’s identity may be verified by a school-issued identification card with a photograph.

(d) If a requestor is unable to verify a subject’s identity and signature in person, the subject may submit a completed CORI Acknowledgment Form acknowledged by the subject before a notary public.

(e) Requestors that are unable to verify a subject’s identity either in person or by acceptance of a notarized CORI Acknowledgment Form, shall verify the identity of the subject by inspection of a photographic form of government-issued identification via videoconference. A legally designated representative may also use 803 CMR 2.11(5)(e) to submit a personal CORI request for and on behalf of his or her client.

An employer, volunteer organization, landlord, property management company, real estate agent, or public housing authority that verifies a subject’s identity via videoconference shall verify the subject’s identity in person or by acceptance of a notarized CORI Acknowledgment Form within seven days of the subject reporting to work or a volunteer opportunity or acceptance of a lease or rental.  In instances where the identity does not match the information provided, the requestor shall submit a new CORI request with the information verified either in person or by acceptance of a notarized CORI Acknowledgment Form

It is not necessary for an employer, volunteer organization, landlord, property management company, real estate agent, or public housing authority to re-verify a prior verification by videoconference if the subject does not subsequently report in person to work or a volunteer opportunity or for acceptance of a lease or rental.

For any subject verified by videoconference between April 9, 2020 and June 15, 2021, which subject is required by 803 CMR 2.11(5)(e) to be re-verified, the re-verification may be completed by July 9, 2021 but must be completed no later than July 9, 2021 DCJIS may supplement 803 CMR 2.00 in the future with written guidance requiring that verification by videoconference be accompanied by the electronic or paper submission of copies of any documents described in 803 CMR 2.11(5)(a), (b), (c), or (d).

(f) Requestors that are unable to verify a subject’s identity in person or as outlined in 803 CMR 2.11(5)(a), (b), (c), (d), or (e) may petition DCJIS for an alternative means of identity verification.  DCJIS may grant, deny, or suggest an alternative means of identity verification sufficient to reasonably verify the subject’s identity.  DCJIS may require CORI requests verified under such alternative means to be verified either in person or through the submission of a notarized CORI Acknowledgment Form at a later time.

(g) DCJIS may supplement 803 CMR 2.00 with written guidance that would permit verification by other electronic means in accordance with the terms of such guidance.

For information on how Hire Image can help fulfil your CORI requests, please contact our office.

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