A skip trace (or skiptrace) typically refers to the process of finding the location of someone – usually with the implication that the person does not want to be found.
This term originates from the idea of “skipping town” with the “skip” being the person that needs to be found and “trace” referring the process of finding that person.
A skip trace is most often associated with law enforcement, lawyers and private investigators, but is also linked to journalists, debt collectors, bail bondsmen and even bounty hunters. Conducting a skip trace starts with the collection of known information surrounding an individual.
If known, a social security number – which is typically associated with any type of credit transaction (including even things like cell phone contracts) as well as virtually every type of legal/governmental transaction – is often a great way to trace whereabouts of an individual. Public records – including criminal records, marital records, judgments, liens, etc. – are all tied to social security numbers.
However, even if a social security number is unknown, many public records databases can successfully link this same useful information based on little more than a name and last known city and state. In addition, these public record background checks can also provide a list of relatives and known associates, which can further help to locate someone and complete a skip trace.
While these instant online resources are used extensively by private investigators and the like for skip traces and other investigations, because the information they contain is a matter of public records, they are available for use by anyone. Most importantly, in addition to the public records, you’ll also receive a current address and phone number. You can try a search below for free preview results on what’s available: