Women suing school for performing credit check

A woman is suing the University of Miami after her job offer at the college’s medical school was revoked due to bad credit found on a background check. The topic of credit checks and the role they should play in pre-employment background checks is one we are hearing a lot about recently, and some are hoping that this case will help ban employers from using credit histories in hiring decisions. Apparently the woman’s application was accepted, only to be revoked when she was notified that a car repossession and defaulted student loan found on her credit report during a background check disqualified her from the job, “even after she had been through several interviews and apparently had the right experience for that job”. In addition, the woman filing the suit is African-American and this case serves as evidence to the belief of some that the use credit reports by employers discriminates against minority job applicants, since more Latinos and blacks are unemployed than whites and unemployment is often the reason people cannot pay their bills. The lawsuit is pending in court.

The outcome of this story will be of interest to many – both employers and job seekers. Should credit checks be part of a background screening? Or does someone’s personal financial situation have no reflection their ability to perform a job?

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