Handbook of Forensic Services

Federal Bureau of Investigation


The Handbook of Forensic Services provides guidance and procedures for safe and efficient methods of collecting, preserving, packaging, and shipping evidence and describes the forensic examinations performed by the FBI’s Laboratory Division and Operational Technology Division.

The Handbook

2019 Edition
Download the 2019 edition of the Handbook of Forensic Services
2013 Edition
Download the 2013 edition of the Handbook of Forensic Services
2007 Edition
Download the 2007 edition of the Handbook of Forensic Services
2003 Edition.
Download the 2003 edition of the Handbook of Forensic Services
1999 Edition.
Download the 1999 edition of the Handbook of Forensic Services
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Contents of the 2019 Edition of the Handbook of Forensic Services

    • FBI Forensic Services
    • Additional Case Acceptance Guidelines
    • Requesting Evidence Examinations
    • Packaging and Shipping Evidence
    • Adhesive, Caulk, and Sealant Examinations
    • Advanced Photography
    • Age of Document Examination
    • Altered or Obliterated Writing Examinations
    • Anonymous Letter File
    • Anthropological Examinations
    • Arson Examinations
    • Bank Robbery Note File
    • Bank Security Dye Examinations
    • Biological Material Examination
    • Building Materials Examinations
    • Bullet Examinations
    • Bullet Jacket Alloy Examinations
    • Burned or Charred Paper Examinations
    • Carbon-14 Examinations
    • Carbon Paper or Carbon-Film Ribbon Examinations
    • Cartridge Case and Shotshell Casing (Fired) Examinations
    • Cartridge/Shotshell and Ammunition Component (Unfired) Examinations
    • Checkwriters Examinations
    • Controlled Substance Examinations
    • Crime Scene Surveys, Documentation, and Reconstruction
    • Cryptanalysis Examinations
    • Demonstrative Evidence
    • DNA Casework Examinations
    • Drug Records Examinations
    • Embossing and Seals Examinations
    • Evidence Response Team
    • Explosives Examinations
    • Explosives Residue Examinations
    • Fabric Examinations
    • FBI Disaster Squad
    • Feather Examinations
    • Federal DNA Database (formerly Federal Convicted Offender) Examinations
    • Fiber Examinations
    • Firearms Examinations
    • Firearms Image Examinations
    • Forensic Facial Imaging
    • Gambling Device Examinations
    • Gambling Records Examinations
    • GIS Mapping and Aerial Photography
    • Glass Examinations
    • Graphic Arts (Commercial and Office Printing) Examinations
    • Hair Examinations
    • Handwriting and Hand Printing Examinations
    • Human Smuggling Records Examinations
    • Ink Examinations
    • Laboratory Shooting Reconstruction Team
    • Latent Print (Friction Ridge) Examinations
    • Loan Records Examinations
    • Lubricant Examinations
    • Metallurgy Examinations
    • Muzzle-to-Target Distance Determination
    • National DNA Index System/Combined DNA Index System
    • National Integrated Ballistic Information Network (NIBIN)
    • National Missing Person DNA Database (NMPDD) Program
    • Packaging Examinations
    • Paint Examinations
    • Paper Examinations
    • Pepper Spray and Pepper Foam Examinations
    • Pharmaceutical Examinations
    • Photocopy or Facsimile Examinations
    • Plastic Bag Examinations
    • Polymer Examinations
    • Product Tampering Examinations
    • Prostitution Records Examinations
    • Radioactive Materials Examinations
    • Rope or Cordage Examinations
    • Rubber Stamp Examinations
    • Safe Insulation Examinations
    • Serial Number (Altered) Examinations
    • Shoe Print and Tire Tread Examinations
    • Soil Examinations
    • Special Event and Situational Awareness Support
    • Symbol Examinations
    • Tape Examinations
    • Toolmark Examinations
    • Toxicology Examinations
    • Typewriting Examinations
    • Unknowns (General Chemical) Examinations
    • Weapons of Mass Destruction/CBRN Evidence Examinations
    • Routes of Exposure
    • Safety
    • Personal Protective Equipment
    • Hazardous Materials Transportation
    • Hazardous Waste Regulations
    • References

Download the 2019 edition of the Handbook of Forensic Services