Calif. courts disagree about how to proceed with some background checks

relating to the employee’s character, general reputation … and qualifications for potential employment.” Connor sued under the California Investigative Consumer Reporting Agencies Act (ICRAA), because First Student had not obtained her written permission before conducting any background screening, whether for a credit or character report. Meanwhile, First Student requested summary judgment due to the ICRAA being “unconstitutionally vague” because the ICRAA was not clear whether it only applied to questions of credit reporting or if it applied to an employee’s character report. The first court agreed with First Student, in that the law was too vague to be upheld, and also that it conflicted with another, similar law. Connor appealed this decision and the appeals court determined that, regardless of the ambiguity of the ICRAA, First Student did not have the right to conduct basic background screening (including criminal records and employment history) without Connor’s written permission. The case is now back at trial court. Because there is so much ambiguity in the law when it comes to background checking, your best bet is always to hire a background screening company when making hiring decisions, as they are the most likely to be versed in your state or region’s screening laws. To learn more about what a background screening service can do for your business, contact Mind Your Business.]]>

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