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Background Check Information and FAQs

Background Check Information and FAQs

AADMM requires member background checks to ensure any DDM listed on its website has been verified and passed rigorous financial and criminal checks. As of October 1, 2018, all members must pass a background check before becoming a member or renewing membership. This applies to all classes of membership, including individual members as well as firms. The background check must be conducted on the individual wishing to join AADMM, not on the company. Thereafter, the background check must be updated every two years. To ensure you receive your membership renewal invoice, please send your approval letter by early December. 


Who must have a background check?

All new and renewing members must undergo a background check. AADMM strongly recommends that firm owners conduct background checks on all of their employees, however only those employees who are listed as AADMM members are required to undergo the AADMM background check.


What is the application process for undergoing a background check?

It is an online process with a link from the AADMM website to our preferred provider.


Can I use an outside vendor for background checks to renew for membership?

AADMM will accept clearances, which have been obtained in the last six months, and  contain all of the following criteria:

  1. Social Security Verification
  2. Address History Trace 
  3. County Criminal Search (All counties of residence in the past seven years)
  4. Federal Criminal Search (All states of residence in the past seven years)
  5. National Criminal Database Search
  6. National Sex Offender Search
  7. The Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”) of the US Department of the Treasury Search.   

The member is responsible for providing the background check approval letter to the business office,, at the time of renewal and all seven criteria must be met or the background check will not be accepted.


What if I don’t pass?

Any individual who does not pass the background check will not be able to join or renew membership in AADMM.


How much will it cost?

The background checks will cost $23.50 per person*. Members are required to renew their background checks every two years. 

 *New Fees effective May 1, 2024: New York – $119.50.


Does a firm have to have all of its employees checked even if they are not AADMM members?

No, it may choose to order background checks on AADMM members only.

 What does the background check include?

The standard AADMM Background Check includes the following:

  1. Social Security Verification
  2. Address History Trace
  3. County Criminal (All counties of residence in the past seven years)
  4. Federal Criminal (All states of residents in the past seven years)
  5. National Criminal Database Search
  6. National Sex Offender Search
  7. ClearStar, Inc. WatchList (OFAC)

What will disqualify my background check?

AADMM’s preferred provider will check the following:

  • Dishonesty: All fraud, including but not limited to credit card fraud, embezzlement, bad/worthless checks, fraudulent trading, possession of stolen property, forgery and counterfeiting, proceeds of crimes offenses, theft, bribery and corruption, money laundering, concealment of property, trespassing with intent to steal (burglary), blackmail/extortion.
  • Business: Any offense involving computer misuse, organizing or engaging in illegal work, economic/corporate/business espionage.
  • Other: Felony (US – convictions), sexual offenses, assault/battery/abuse.


Is there an appeal process if my background check does not clear?

Yes, you will work directly with AADMM’s preferred provider on this. 


Will members be grandfathered if they already have a background check?

Any new member who has a current background check completed within the past year will be grandfathered in for their initial check.


What if I already have a clean background check?

New members who have undergone a background check in the past year will be able to join with proof of a completed, clean background check. On their first renewal after the two-year anniversary of that background check and for all subsequent renewals, they will be required to pass the AADMM background check as detailed above.


Does AADMM have access to my confidential information?

It is important to note AADMM’s preferred provider does NOT send background check results to AADMM. Members should send in their approval letter, NOT the whole document. Full reports contain confidential information that AADMM does not need to know as we value our members’ privacy.


How often will you need to complete a background check?

Background checks must be completed every two years. Those renewing/joining in 2020 will be required to have a new check done for the 2022 renewal year.


Will we be notified of the results before AADMM gets them?

The background check report will only be provided to the member who requests the check.


How secure is the process?

The process of transmitting information is between the member and the AADMM preferred provider. Please see the privacy policy for more information. ClearStar, Inc. will have access to and will store the member’s information. AADMM will not receive any information provided to the preferred provider.


Are members given the entire report of their findings?

The member will be given the entire report.


Will AADMM be given the entire report of their findings?

No, AADMM will only be informed if a member passes. If someone should fail the background check, AADMM will not receive anything, but the individual’s application/renewal will not be processed without a passing background check.


How will AADMM safeguard any information regarding our background checks?

AADMM will not be provided any background check reports.


Why isn’t this offered as a voluntary membership arrangement that we can purchase, similar to the insurance coverage?

The AADMM board believes that this is a critical element in the development of daily money management as a profession, as it enhances our credibility in the marketplace. Just as all members are required to sign our Code of Ethics, all members are required to pass a third-party background check.


Does the background check require members to be fingerprinted or have biometrics taken?



If an AADMM member conducts business in two states, but only has a residence in one of those states, how would they request a check for each of the states in which they do business?

The background check for the AADMM membership includes criminal searches in all counties/states of residence in the last 7 years at both the state and federal level. Members do not need to request a background check for each state they do business in if they have resided in each of those states within the last 7 years (regardless of where they are living now). It will be a part of that search. If a member has not resided in one or more of the states in which they do business, or if they have not resided in one or more of the states within the last 7 years, they should contact AADMM’s preferred provider to discuss their request prior to requesting the check.


Does AADMM make a profit on the background checks?

No, AADMM does not receive any monies, only the vendor does.


Will AADMM consider exception requests?

In the spirit of unbiased fairness to all our members, AADMM will not consider exception requests.

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