Obtaining a Police Record from the U.S.

Contrary to popular belief, the U.S. Embassy in Montevideo does not provide or take fingerprints for the purpose of conducting criminal record searches. These are conducted centrally by the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) in the United States.

To obtain FBI criminal records, the requestor must first call the Office of INTERPOL in Montevideo and make an appointment to have manual fingerprints taken. It’s important to bear in mind that INTERPOL only takes fingerprints to aliens who are in the process of applying for Uruguayan legal residency.

Address: Maldonado 1109
Phone: 2030 4635

You should go to your interview with the following:
1. International Credit Card;
2. Your valid passport;
3. Social Security Number (if applicable)

INTERPOL personnel will take your fingerprints and request that you complete a form. Subsequently, you will have to mail the sealed envelope provided by INTERPOL (containing your fingerprints and completed form) to the FBI’s Criminal Justice Information Services Division in the United States. While it is difficult to estimate how much time this will take, FBI currently estimates a minimum of 14 weeks. You should also allow additional time for international mailing and processing.

After the FBI’s Criminal Justice Information Services Division finalizes your request and prints a report, you must acquire an apostille/authentication of the record from the U.S. Department of State’s Office of Authentications in Washington, DC – this cannot be done at the U.S. Embassy in Montevideo. You may contact a family member in the United States to assist you with this, or there are a number of third party couriers/messengers that will do this for you, for a fee. You can locate one of these couriers by visiting the official FBI website.

Once the FBI record has been apostilled at the U.S. Department of State in Washington D.C., your family member or third-party courier should mail the documentation to you for use in Uruguay. In some cases, the entire process can take between 2-3 months. Please allow sufficient time, as this process is not managed by the U.S. Embassy in Montevideo, nor can we expedite processing.