Did the employer disclose its background check on you?
So you applied for a job. Your prospective employer may likely do a background check on you. This is true particularly for those applying in sensitive job positions. Some employers will do their investigation in-house. Others may hire an outside company to do the background checks.
Here are some of the information that can be found about you:
- Most employers are willing only to confirm a job applicants’ dates of employment and position with them for fear of being sued.
- Medical History. Various laws prohibit employers from inquiring about your medical condition or disabilities. Employers though can inquire about your ability to perform specific job functions.
- Education Records. Employers can obtain certifications of years of attendance from the schools listed on resumes by directly contacting them. School records must be obtained with the student’s consent.
- Credit Reports.Employers are not allowed to discriminate against you based on low credit scores or bankruptcy filings.
- DMV Driving/Vehicle Registration Records. Employers can directly obtain your driving status, violations, accidents, and vehicle registration records without your consent.
- Immigration Records. Employers may obtain thisby filing Form I-9 with the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services
- Criminal / Arrest Records. A criminal conviction is considered only if it’s relevant to the job. Employers can review arrest records only if the arrest resulted in a conviction, or if the applicant is out of jail and awaiting trial. Otherwise, arrest records are off-limits. Also off-limits are marijuana convictions that are more than 2 years old and juvenile criminal records.
- Military Records. Employers can obtain your name, rank, salary, assignments and awards without your consent.
- Drug Test Records
- Court Records
- State Licensing Records
- Sex Offender Lists
Generally, in California, before an employer may obtain a background check report, the employer must provide a clear and conspicuous written disclosure to the applicant that a background check will be done. This document must be a stand-alone disclosure and should contain only this disclosure and not other types of disclosure.
As the job applicant, you must provide written consent before the employer can obtain a background check report. In California, the employer must first provide an offer of employment to the applicant before inquiring about the applicant’s criminal history or accessing Workers Compensation records.
How serious is it if the employer were to violate these background check rules?
A company called Genco, which is a subsidiary of FedEx, was sued by employees for violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and other California laws. The employer was accused of not providing employees with adequate pre-screening disclosures before the company ran a pre-employment background check. The employer was also accused of not providing employees with meal and rest periods. The parties agreed to settle the employees’ claims for $3,150,000.
The Law Offices of C. Joe Sayas, Jr. welcomes inquiries about this topic. All inquiries are confidential and at no-cost. You can contact the office at (818) 291-0088 or visit www.joesayaslaw.comor our Facebook page Joe Sayas Law. [C. Joe Sayas, Jr., Esq. is an experienced trial attorney who has successfully recovered wages and other monetary damages for thousands of employees and consumers. He was named Top Labor & Employment Attorney in California by the Daily Journal, consistently selected as Super Lawyer by the Los Angeles Magazine, is the recipient of PABA’s Community Champion Award, and is aPresidential Awardee for Outstanding FilipinoOverseas in 2018.]