2012 changes affect employment background checks
informative piece recently regarding a few of the significant changes that have been implemented in the background screening industry this year. For example, were you aware that 2012 “is the first time in more than 20 years, since 1990, that the industry has updated their regulations”? We thought it was worth highlighting the key points noted, and how it might impact your background check process: 1. Court Record Restrictions In the state of Indiana, a new bill restricts criminal history reporting in background checks by blocking certain types of criminal history information from being obtained. What does this mean for employers? For Indiana companies, you now cannot ask an employee or applicant about the information contained in sealed or restricted criminal records. 2. Blanket Criminal Record Policies The EEOC has stated that you must not disqualify job applicants simply because they have a criminal record. What does this mean for employers? If your applicant has a criminal record, you can’t simply dismiss them as a job candidate. To do so is too broad of a sweep to take when you’re screening a new hire, and you instead need to give them the opportunity to explain the infraction, and suggest reasons why they shouldn’t be disqualified. 3. Arrest Records in Background Searches According to the EEOC, the fact that someone was arrested with no context around the conviction (or lack thereof) is no indication of criminal activity. Arrest records are often incomplete, and are not the same thing as a criminal conviction. What does this mean for employers? Just as you would with someone who has a criminal record, request more information about any particular arrest that alarms you. 4. Credit Report Limitations Many states have begun limiting the use of credit reports by employers for screening out new hires. This law is being enacted in order to prohibit discrimination against individuals based on their credit history. What does this mean for employers? While it’s only a law in the states of California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Oregon, Washington and Vermont, it may well become law in other states soon too and is something all business owners ought to be aware of. All in all, it’s imperative to be clear about employment legislation as a business owner. You can never be too careful, and should play a proactive role on staying on top of legal changes. For further information, get in touch today and we’ll do our best to answer any questions or concerns.]]>
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