A Complete Guide to Intelius Reviews: Is it Legit and Worth It?

March 19, 2024

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Intelius is one of the most popular public records search and background check services available today. With over 20 years of experience, Intelius gives users access to a massive database of public records to look up information on people.

But is Intelius legit? Can it be trusted? And is signing up for their services actually worth the cost?

This comprehensive guide dives into real Intelius reviews from customers, examines their pricing and features, and provides an honest look at the pros and cons to help you decide if Intelius is right for you.

What is Intelius?

Intelius Logo

Founded in 2003, Intelius is an online background check company that provides access to public records databases to look up information on people.

Intelius offers a variety of services, including:

  • People Search: Search for someone by name, phone number, email, or address to find contact info, relatives, past addresses, and more.
  • Background Checks: Access criminal records, court records, bankruptcies, marriages/divorces, and more.
  • Reverse Phone Lookup: Enter a phone number to find out who it belongs to.
  • Reverse Address Lookup: Enter an address to find property records, past residents, and more about a home.

The key benefit of Intelius is convenience. Rather than digging through various public records yourself, Intelius compiles everything in one place. However, it’s important to know Intelius is not a Consumer Reporting Agency (CRA) and cannot be used for things like employment screening.

Is Intelius Legit and Can They Be Trusted?

With any background check service, it’s natural to be skeptical. So is Intelius legit?

The short answer is yes. Intelius is a real company with over 20 years of experience in the industry. They’ve helped over 60 million users access public records.

Here are a few signs Intelius is trustworthy and legitimate:

  • BBB Rating: Intelius currently holds an A+ rating on the Better Business Bureau, indicating a trustworthy company.
  • Real Company: Intelius is registered as a corporate entity, headquartered in Seattle, WA. You can find them on the Washington Secretary of State site.
  • Secure Site: Their website uses HTTPS encryption to keep your information secure.
  • Responsive Support: Phone, email, and live chat options are available for customer service issues.
  • Refund Policy: Intelius offers full refunds within 7 days if you’re unsatisfied. This shows they stand behind their services.

While no background check service is 100% perfect, Intelius has built a largely positive reputation over 20+ years in business. As long as you understand their services cannot replace official employment screening, Intelius is considered a legitimate and helpful tool for casual background checks by most standards.

Intelius Review From Real Customers: Pros and Cons

Beyond the company itself, what do actual paying customers have to say in their Intelius reviews?

Here is an overview of the most common pros and cons mentioned by Intelius users:


  • Wealth of Information: Customers mention Intelius provides extensive details from public records that would be difficult to find on your own.
  • Accuracy: While no report is perfect, most customers vouch for Intelius having accurate and up-to-date information in their experience.
  • Speed: Running a quick background check on Intelius can save hours or days versus researching records yourself.
  • User-Friendly: The Intelius site and mobile apps make searching smooth and easy for finding information on people.
  • Customer Service: Many reviews cite friendly, responsive customer service as a plus.


  • Cost: Intelius is affordable for casual use but charges subscription fees that can add up compared to free search engines.
  • Hard to Cancel: Some reviews mention difficulty unsubscribing from automatically renewing plans.
  • Data Lacks Depth: While extensive, some customers expect more details than public records contain.
  • Incorrect Data: No background check is perfect. Some reviews mention finding a few outdated or incorrect pieces of data points in reports.

Overall, most customers find value in the depth of information and convenience Intelius provides. But the service isn’t perfect. Monitoring subscription plans and costs is advised if you move forward with their paid offerings.

Key Features and Services of Intelius


Intelius offers a wide range of features across their various background check services. Here are some of the key options available:

Intelius People Search
  • Name, address, phone number search
  • Email lookup
  • Current + previous addresses
  • Age, date of birth
  • Possible relatives + family members
  • Social media profiles
  • Criminal records overview
  • Bankruptcy filings
  • Marriage + divorce records

Background Checks

Intelius Background Checks
  • Expanded criminal check
  • Inmate records
  • Sex offender registry check
  • Court/lawsuit records
  • Eviction history
  • Professional licenses
  • Education history
  • Employment history
  • Net worth estimates
  • Bankruptcy details
  • Detailed family relations

Reverse Phone Lookup

Intelius Reverse Phone Lookup
  • Owner’s name
  • Location of phone number
  • Carrier + phone type
  • Home value estimates
  • Criminal records
  • Relatives
  • Current + previous addresses

Reverse Address Lookup

Intelius Reverse Address Lookup
  • Current residents
  • Past residents history
  • Property value estimates
  • Sale history
  • Square footage
  • Bedrooms/bathrooms
  • Year built
  • Property taxes
  • Nearby sex offenders

Subscription Memberships

  • Unlimited searches
  • Discounted pricing
  • Customizable alerts/monitoring

You can run individual searches on any of these services as needed, or subscriptions provide bulk discounted access if you plan to run searches regularly.

What Does Intelius Cost? Pricing Breakdown

Intelius offers flexible pricing, with the option to pay-as-you-go for individual searches or sign up for an unlimited use subscription membership.

Intelius Pricing

Here is a pricing breakdown for key Intelius services:

  • People Search: $0.95 per report
  • Reverse Phone Lookup: $0.95 per report
  • Reverse Address Lookup: $4.95 – $14.95 per report
  • Criminal Records Search: $14.95 per state; $29.95 nationwide
  • Background Check: $39.95 per report
  • Premier Membership: $19.95/month unlimited searches
  • Premier Plus Membership: $29.95/month unlimited +1 background check

Subscription memberships offer the best value if you plan to run multiple searches per month. Premier gives you unlimited searches, while Premier Plus adds one background check.

You can also pay less per report if you purchase credits in bulk packages rather than single searches. Overall, Intelius offers a very reasonable and affordable pricing structure compared to alternatives.

How to Cancel Intelius and Avoid Being Charged

One of the most common complaints from unhappy Intelius customers is difficulty unsubscribing and continued monthly charges.

Many users report being automatically enrolled in subscriptions without consent. Others have trouble actually cancelling subscriptions even after contacting customer service.

Here are some tips to avoid unwanted Intelius charges:

  • When signing up, uncheck any pre-checked boxes for subscriptions or memberships.
  • Use a virtual credit card number or privacy.com to control charges.
  • Review your statement and cancel within 7 days of signing up to avoid fees.
  • Call customer support and request written confirmation of your cancellation.
  • Monitor your statements for 1-2 billing cycles to ensure no further charges.
  • Dispute any unauthorized charges with your bank/credit card company.

Being proactive protects you from unintended charges from Intelius. But customer service is also quick to refund any erroneous billings if contacted promptly.

Pros and Cons of Intelius: The Bottom Line


  • Extensive public records data
  • Fast, easy background checks
  • Affordable pricing options
  • Responsive customer service


  • Not for employment screening
  • Potential errors in reports
  • Cancelling subscriptions can be tricky
  • Some outdated information

For casual background checks and public records access, Intelius delivers an impressive amount of information with relative convenience. Just be cautious with managing your subscription and costs.

While Intelius has room for improvement, its wealth of data and responsive support outweigh shortcomings for most personal research needs. Give their 7-day refund policy a test run if on the fence.

Intelius Alternatives for Background Checks

While Intelius is one of the most popular public records search services, there are other options that provide similar people search and background check features:


  • Offers comparable criminal records, reverse phone lookup, and public records access
  • More limited report details compared to Intelius
  • $28.05 monthly membership ($7 cheaper than Intelius)


  • Provides people search, reverse phone, and background checks
  • Employment/tenant screening tools available
  • $29.99 monthly basic plan

Instant Checkmate

  • Extra focus on criminal records specifically
  • $35.12 basic monthly plan
  • 7 day trial for $1 like Intelius


  • Specializes more in contact information lookup
  • pay-per-report and subscription plan
  • $0.95 per individual report and $19.95 monthly basic plan

The competition provides comparable alternatives. But Intelius stands out with its vast public records access of over 20 billion documents and integration of many data sources into convenient reports. For most casual personal background checks, Intelius delivers top value at very affordable subscription rates.

Frequently Asked Questions About Intelius

Is Intelius a legitimate company?

Yes, Intelius is a legitimate corporation based in Seattle, WA. Founded in 2003, they have served over 60 million customers by compiling public records into background check reports.

Can businesses use Intelius for employment screening?

No, Intelius is not FCRA-compliant. For employment checks like pre-screening applicants, employers need a Consumer Reporting Agency (CRA). Intelius does not meet those verification standards.

Does Intelius provide a free trial?

Intelius offers free trials on their subscription plans. You get 7 days of Premier or Premier Plus access for under $1. This lets you test it out before committing.

Is there a mobile app?

Yes, Intelius offers mobile apps for both iOS and Android. The apps make it easy to run a quick search on-the-go.

How far back do Intelius background checks go?

It varies case-by-case, but Intelius frequently provides records dating back over a decade. Some criminal or financial records can appear for 25+ years.

Can you remove your information from Intelius?

You can submit removal requests to Intelius if you find your personal information in their database. However, they rely on public records, so deletion isn’t always possible if details remain matters of public record.

Is an Intelius background check admissible in court?

No, Intelius reports do not constitute formal proof. Their background checks are based on compiled public records. Courts require scrutiny of original documentation.

Does Intelius offer refunds?

Yes, Intelius provides full refunds if you cancel services within 7 days of signing up. This refund policy allows you to get your money back if unsatisfied.

Can I do one-time searches without an Intelius subscription?

Absolutely. Intelius offers individual a-la-carte searches if you just need to run a single background or phone/address lookup. Subscriptions are optional for repeat users.

While no background check service offers completely flawless data, Intelius leverages extensive public records databases to provide valuable intel conveniently in one place.

Hopefully this guide gives you a balanced perspective on what current Intelius customers are saying, unbiased insight into their features and pricing, and tips for getting the most out of their services.

In most cases, you can find out a lot of helpful information about people quickly and affordably. Just be cautious with managing subscriptions. Go to Intelius.com for a risk-free trial to run your own test searches.

Key Takeaways on Intelius:

  • Intelius provides fast, convenient access to public records for background checks. Reviews suggest they offer extensive information you’d struggle to find independently.
  • Overall, Intelius has a largely positive reputation built over 20+ years in business. Their tools are best used for casual personal checks, not official employment screening.
  • Getting the most value out of Intelius depends on selecting the right membership plan for your use case and monitoring billing cycles closely to avoid unintended charges.
  • While not perfect, Intelius customer service is generally responsive in resolving concerns like refunds or cancellations if issues arise after signing up.
  • Give Intelius a try yourself and leverage their 7-day refund policy. Just be an informed consumer when providing payment details to prevent unwanted surprise fees down the road.