Megan's Law

For over 50 years, California has required certain sex offenders to register with their local law enforcement agencies. However, information on the whereabouts of the sex offenders was not available to the public until implementation of the Child Molester Identification Line in July 1995. The available information was expanded by California’s “Megan’s Law” in 1996 (Chapter 908, Stats. Of 1996). California’s Megan’s Law provides public access to certain information on the whereabouts of "serious” and “high-risk” sex offenders in their local community. The law specifically prohibits using the information to harass or commit any crime against the offender. Megan's Law makes available to adults and organizations information on "serious" and "high-risk" sex offenders in their local community. The information on a registered sex offender includes: name and known aliases, age and sex, physical description (including scars, marks and/or tattoos, photograph (if available), crimes resulting in registration, county of residence, and zip code (based on last registration).

You may access the information via the MEGAN'S LAW WEB APPLICATION for free at viewing stations located at certain law enforcement agencies. Please refer to our list of local sheriff's offices and police departments that offer public access to this application.

This new application, which has replaced the CD-ROM, has important new features. The information is updated daily by the Department of Justice and is viewable in 13 different languages. The languages are Arabic, Armenian, Cambodian, Chinese, English, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Punjabi, Russian, Spanish, Tagalog, and Vietnamese.

You may also check to determine if a particular sex offender is a "high risk" or "serious" sex offender by calling the California Sex Offender Information 900# telephone service at 1-900-448-3000. There is a fee of $10 per call for checks on up to two names.

To view the Megan's Law Web Application, you must:

  • be at least 18 years of age, or accompanied by parent or legal guardian;
  • provide a California driver's license or California identification card;
  • sign a statement that you are not a registered sex offender, and that you understand the purpose of the release of information is for the public to protect themselves and their children from sex offenders; and that it is illegal to use the information to harass, discriminate or commit a crime against any registrant;
  • state a distinct purpose for viewing the Megan's Law Web Application, if required by local law enforcement.
All sheriff's departments and every police department serving a population of 200,000 or more are required to make the Megan's Law Web Application available for public viewing. Many other police departments in smaller jurisdications also make the information available. To determine the nearest Megan's Law Web Application viewing station, please contact your local law enforcement agency.