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Everything You Need To Know About Submitting Fingerprint Cards to Florida

Fingerprints are essential to establishing identity in the modern world, and fingerprint cards in Florida are an essential tool used by law enforcement and other agencies.

If you are planning to apply for certain licenses in  Florida, getting your fingerprints taken is a necessary step. Whether applying for a job, a license or doing some other type of background check, you must have your fingerprints taken and submitted to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE). 

Knowing where to go and what to do can be confusing, but don’t worry. This essential guide to getting your fingerprint cards in Florida will help you understand the process and ensure you have everything you need to get your fingerprints taken and submitted correctly. 

We’ll show you where to go, what to bring, and how to submit your fingerprints. With this guide, you can ensure that your fingerprints are submitted correctly and get you on the path to success in Florida. Here is everything you need to know about fingerprint cards in Florida:

What Are Fingerprint Cards?

Fingerprint cards are standard forms that contain prints taken of an individual’s fingers using an ink pad or electronic scanner. This information is then compared with other fingerprint records to verify a person’s identity.

If you are moving to Florida, you must take your fingerprints and submit them to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE). A fingerprint card is a scan of your fingerprints that can be compared to any criminal or background records. The fingerprint cards can also be used to identify you later if you are involved in a crime and need to be recognized by fingerprints. 

Why Is This Important? 

To get a job, get a license, apply for a security clearance, or to get other types of licenses or benefits, you will need to provide FDLE with your fingerprints. It is also used for background checks (like federal employment, mortgages, or a license to carry a gun). 

Because of the importance of these reasons for getting fingerprints taken, strict regulations are in place to ensure that everyone’s fingerprints are handled correctly.

Professional regulation fingerprint cards must meet the requirements of the FBI fingerprinting regulations and include a signature, photograph, and other identifying information.

Documents Needed To Get Your Fingerprints Taken


Valid Identification

You will need to bring your valid state-issued identification. You must have valid Florida identification to be able to get your fingerprints taken.

Valid Driver’s License

If you do not have a valid driver’s license, you will not be able to get your fingerprints taken. The identification on your driver’s license needs to match your name exactly. If you cannot provide an exact match, you will not be able to get your fingerprints taken.


Photo ID

You will also need to bring a photo ID showing your name and address. You can only get your fingerprints taken if you have a current photo ID. Consumer services fingerprinting (such as fingerprinting for background checks) requires that you provide a photo ID.

Steps To Get Your Fingerprints Taken

When you go to get your fingerprints taken, you first need to make sure the person taking your fingerprints is authorized to do so. Next, you must order cards from 1st Choice Live Scan and get your fingerprint cards. Only Non Criminal Fingerprint Cards, FBI Form FD258, are available to the public.  It is this form that should be used to obtain your fingerprint to be sent to be scanned into the FDLE system.  Once you have your non-criminal FD258 fingerprint cards, you must visit a designated state agency or licensed fingerprint vendor authorized by the state to have your fingerprints taken. The agency will have fingerprint readers that will take your fingerprints and print them to FD258 fingerprint cards.  

What Is The Cost Of Fingerprint Cards In Florida?

fingerprinting in florida

The cost of fingerprint cards in Florida varies depending on your selected vendor and services. Generally speaking, it will cost anywhere from $10-$30 to have your fingerprints taken and printed onto an FD-258 fingerprint card.

Additionally, additional fees may be associated with fingerprint processing or background checks if required by the agency requesting fingerprints.

How To Pay For Your Fingerprint Card

When you go to the designated state agency to take your fingerprints, they will need to charge you a fee. The fee varies by livescan fingerprint vendfor and agency requesting prints.  

They will tell you how many fingerprint cards you need, and then you will pay for them at the office. You will pay for each fingerprint card with the form of payment required by the fingerprint vendor. 

How Long Does It Take To Get Your Fingerprint Card?

It can take two weeks for FDLE to process and finalize the background results from your fingerprints. This is the standard time frame for fingerprint processing. Benefits of using companies like 1st Choice Live Scan is they will upload your fingerprint cards on the same day they are received .  In some extreme cases, fingerprint cards have been submitted on a Tuesday and received on a Friday.

Your fingerprint cards are scanned and uploaded by a licensed or authorized fingerprint vendor.  Cards are processed for background within 24 hours by the FDLE and results are sent to the requesting agency.  Typical background results are available to the agency within 48 hours but they have taken as long as several weeks in extreme cases.  

However, delay processing of fingerprint cards can be avoided by having your prints taken digitally and printed to fingerprint cards 

Submitting Fingerprints

Criminal history or background checks may sometimes be required. In these instances, you must submit fingerprint cards to the FDLE and wait for them to process your fingerprints.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) also requires fingerprint cards from anyone who wants to get fingerprinted for any background check. 

Where To Submit Your Fingerprints

Once you have your fingerprints taken, you will need to submit your fingerprints to the FDLE. The best way to do this if you are out of state is to send them to 1st Choice Fingerprinting for processing.  Cards will be processed and transmitted to FDLE the same day as they are received.   You must use the correct format to ensure your fingerprints are read correctly and your application is not rejected. You must use two formats to send your fingerprints to the FDLE. They start with a standard envelope and include the correct stamps and postmark.

You can also submit these to a local police department. Make sure to call ahead and check the fingerprinting hours at the police department you will be visiting.

Tips For Making Sure Your Fingerprints Are Taken Correctly

  • Capture your fingerprints through a company that digitally captures them 
  • Make sure your fingerprints are dry and clean. If your fingers are wet or dirty, your fingerprints will not be read correctly.
  • Make sure your fingerprints are lined up correctly.
  • Make sure your fingers are flat and touching the surface. If your fingers are bent or curled, your fingerprints will not be read correctly.
  • Do not use lotion, deodorant, or chapstick when taking your fingerprints. These will make your fingerprints unreadable.


Fingerprint cards in Florida are important for criminal history, driving records, and background checks.

To ensure that your fingerprint card is read correctly and your application is accepted by the FDLE, you must make sure that you go to the correct fingerprint company and take your fingerprints correctly.

With fingerprint cards playing an increasingly important role in establishing identity, it is important to understand how fingerprint cards work in Florida.

By knowing what fingerprint cards are, who needs them, and how they can be obtained and used, you’ll have a better understanding of the process and be able to make informed decisions about fingerprinting.