Major League Baseball Umpires Cry “Foul” Over Background Checks

Pick up any major U.S. paper today and you’ll see that Major League Baseball Umpires are less than pleased with the methods MLB has used to conduct background checks. They have alleged that investigators are making inquiries with neighbors of the umpires which preclude the neighbors to believe that the umpires are engaged in such activities. Questions have included whether the umpires have ties to the Ku Klux Klan or if they have been known to grow marijuana. MLB has denied has denied any wrong doing.

See Umpires questioning tactics in MLB background checks found in today’s USA Today for the complete story.

Here’s my take. First, the type of investigative work MLB has employed to vett their umpires is far beyond that which your average employer utilizes. That doesn’t make it wrong. That makes it much more in-depth, time intensive and costly. Knowing the embarrassment caused to the NBA when it was revealed that one of their referrees was tied to a mafia gambling ring, they have a vested interest in knowing everything they can about the people they employ to protect the integrity of the sport. Furthermore, if they are not involved in these activities, why would they have a problem with these questions? Lastly, if they don’t want to be subjected to these checks, they always have the option of seeking alternate employment.


If, in fact the investigators crossed the line and intimated that the umpires were involved in the activities they were asking about, they were flat out wrong and should be held accountable. We should have more details in the next few days and weeks and hopefully will be able to make that determination at some other time.

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A Case for Continuous Employment Background Checks

The President of Washington-based Dollarwise payday stores, Charles Seil was operating his business from a prison cell over the summer. A pretty cool trick if you ask me, but the State of Washington didn’t think so when it found out after the fact. In fact, they revoked his license after getting an anonymous tip that he plead guilty to watercraft homicide and had been serving time.

Now, Mr. Seil was not an employee of his company so I doubt he would have instructed his people to run recurring background checks on him to allow for continuous employment, however if the state, which issued his license didn’t get this anonymous tip he’d still be operating his business. What could the state have done?

We’ve written much about the concept of Continuous or Recurring Background Checks recently:

Background Checks for Current Employees

Well, they did perform a background check to issue the license. However, that background check was conducted well before this incident took place. If the had a program in place to update the information, they could have caught this.

The same concept applies to any employer. It’s great that so many organizations see the value in conducting background checks in order to make an informed hiring decision. But, that check doesn’t guarantee that something hasn’t happen since the time that the applicant hired.

Check out the links above for some suggestions on how to effectively screen your current employees.

Even Paradise is No Longer Immune to Need for Background Checks

The beautiful island of Bermuda is one of my favorites with majestic pink sand beaches and the clearest blue waters I have ever seen. If you close your eyes, you can just imagine this tropical paradise and forget about your cares.

Unfortunately, the people of Bermuda are learning a lesson that many have learned long ago: being on a small island or in a small community where everybody knows one another cannot insulate you from harm that can be caused by not performing proper background checks on job candidates.

Are Your Kids in Harm’s Way is a story taken from a local Bermuda newspaper and details a story about a woman who abused children while operating a day care center. This woman had a criminal past and could have been prevented from caring for children had anyone performed a criminal background check.

The problem is that stories such as these repeat themselves all over our country and all over our world. People think that they are immune to such activities because they live in small communities. Unfortunately, many need to live through an experience such as this to realize that this logic cannot stand.

Medical Marijuana in the Workplace

In the past my articles have centered around industry issues and identity theft. I just came across this article on Yahoo and thought it was very interesting. I think this type of case could make it to the U.S. Supreme court as it could have ADA and possible EEOC implications. Obviously, drug screening and substance abuse testing in the workplace is a hot issue today and certainly a service offered by employeescreenIQ. My passion for this particular issue could be argued on both sides. I am a strong supporter for substance abuse testing in the workplace but also understand and support the Americans with Disabilities Act. I am not sure where this one will go, but it will be an interesting ride nonetheless.

Medical Marijuana users can be fired: California Supreme Court

By Adam Tanner Thu Jan 24, 6:14 PM ET

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Companies can fire employees who use marijuana for medical reasons even if California law allows such use because federal law prohibits it, the state’s Supreme Court ruled on Thursday.

“Under California law, an employer may require preemployment drug tests and take illegal drug use into consideration in making employment decisions,” Justice Kathryn Werdegar wrote.


EmployeeScreenIQ Frequently Asked Questions

What is a background check?

A background check, also known as a “consumer report,” is a tool many employers use to learn more about potential employees during the hiring process.

A typical background check includes a social security number trace and a criminal record search. Most often, these record searches are conducted using aggregate Internet databases that are often undependable.

Because as much as 56 percent of resumes include at least one discrepancy, many human resources professionals are spending more time checking references. In fact, more than 50 percent contract out part of the background-screening process.

What makes an EmployeeScreen IQ background search different?

EmployeeScreenIQ understands the importance of human intelligence in the research process.

Unlike many background-screening services available on the Internet, EmployeeScreenIQ does not rely on aggregate databases that are often undependable. Instead, the company utilizes a nationwide network of more than 3,500 court researchers who conduct in-person research directly at each county courthouse where a prospective employee has resided – a practice endorsed as the most effective method of obtaining such information.

Why are such thorough searches important?

The key is risk management.

Employee theft accounts for about $15 billion in losses each year – nearly $5 billion more than shoplifting, according to the annual National Retail Security Survey. In 2004, it was reported that each week, one employee is killed and 25 are injured throughout the country by current or former co-workers.

By screening job applicants thoroughly, companies can save money, keep good employees working and provide better service to customers.

What industries need these thorough background searches?

Thorough searches help companies manage risks. That’s why BusinessWeek suggested that certain industries – especially those with laws prohibiting felons from being employees and those that often deal with the public – would most benefit from ongoing employee screening:

  • Health care
  • Child care
  • Elder care
  • Financial services
  • Delivery services
  • In-home contractors

However, nearly every company benefits from comprehensive background screening.

What does EmployeeScreenIQ do?

The company offers a variety of employment-screening services to mid- and large-sized companies with clients around the world, including in North and South America, Europe and Asia.

Accessed via its Web site,, EmployeeScreenIQ provides clients with customized consumer reports that may include countywide criminal record searches; social security number traces; federal criminal record searches; motor vehicle records; substance-abuse screening; sexual offender registry searches; civil court record searches; pre-employment credit reports; employment verifications; education verifications; professional license verifications; workers compensation claims searches; statewide criminal record searches; national criminal record database searches; reference/supervisor interviews; Homeland Security searches; and I-9 employment eligibility verification.

Why choose EmployeeScreenIQ?

EmployeeScreenIQ is dedicated to providing unsurpassed service to clients with its dedicated account teams. The company also offers unparalleled accuracy and oversight, focused on providing reports that are completed accurately and promptly. The company also focuses on strict legal compliance. The company is Safe Harbor-certified by the U.S. Department of Commerce, allowing it to transmit private information across international borders in compliance with European Union and Global Information Exchange regulations.

Who started the company?

Jason Morris and Les and Nick Fishman established Cleveland, Ohio-based EmployeeScreenIQ, then named Background Information Services, Inc. in 1999. The company changed its name in 2007.

How long does the screening process take to complete?

The average turnaround time is less than three working days for domestic background checks, although delivery time can vary depending on the project.

What are the costs?

The costs vary, depending on the unique needs of each customer. There are no monthly fees and the company does not require a binding service contract. EmployeeScreenIQ also offers volume discounts.

How does EmployeeScreenIQ ensure its searches are accurate?

By sending court researchers directly to the county courts rather than relying on undependable aggregate databases, the company is able to create reports that have more information and are more accurate than standard Internet background-screening services.

To ensure accuracy, EmployeeScreenIQ has multiple levels of oversight.

Is EmployeeScreenIQ affected by any governmental rules or regulations?

Compliance is a major factor in any background-screening process. The practice of pre-employment screening is governed by the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). EmployeeScreenIQ constantly monitors changes to federal regulations and state preemptions as applicable.

Is EmployeeScreenIQ making waves in the global marketplace?

The company is Safe Harbor-certified by the U.S. Department of Commerce, allowing it to transmit private information across international borders in compliance with European Union and Global Information Exchange regulations. Currently, the company is able to conduct criminal record searches in 175 countries and provide verification services for employment and education in over 200 countries throughout the world. EmployeeScreenIQ offers international clientele a Homeland Security Check which cross-references applicants against known Terrorists and Fugitive databases.

Where is the company headed in the future?

EmployeeScreenIQ is committed to pioneering and embracing new technologies that will benefit its clients.

Contact Us

#Contact Us

EmployeeScreen IQ

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Cleveland, OH 44122

Phone: (216) 514-2800

Toll-free: (800) 235-3954

Fax: (216) 514-8222

For more information about our services, email to: or complete and submit our [information request form](main/information_request).

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Direct: (216) 514-2800

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Customer Services

Toll-free: (800) 235-3954 Option 2

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Toll-free: (800) 235-3954 Option 1

Direct: (216) 514-2800


Privacy Policy

#Privacy Policy

EmployeeScreen IQ respects the privacy of our offline/online visitors and clients. It is our policy to maintain the confidentiality and privacy of any personal data voluntarily submitted to us in writing or while visiting our website. We will use the information obtained from our visitors and clients for internal purposes only, so that we may respond to your inquiries in a complete and timely manner and provide regular updates on new products and services available from our company.

Privacy in the Performance of Our International Services

As one of the nation’s leading providers of sensitive public records information, EmployeeScreen IQ operates in full compliance with the Data Protection Act of 1998. The Data Protection Act of 1998 governs the privacy of personal data that is collected, adapted, organized, altered, recorded, used, disclosed, combined, destroyed, or simply being held throughout the United Kingdom.

Principles of Data Protection

EmployeeScreen IQ is committed to the following eight Data Protection Principles provided under Schedule 1 of the Data Protection Act:

1. Personal data shall be processed fairly and lawfully, and only where (a) the subject of the data has given his or her permission; (b) processing is necessary to carry out a contract the individual has entered into; (c) EmployeeScreen IQ is required to process the data by law; (d) processing is in the subject of the data’s best interest; or (e) processing is in furtherance of justice or governmental procedures.

2. Personal data shall be obtained only for one or more specified and lawful purposes, and shall not be further processed in any manner incompatible with that purpose or those purposes.

3. Personal data shall be adequate, relevant, and not excessive in relation to the purpose or purposes for which they are processed.

4. Personal data shall be accurate, and where necessary, kept up to date.

5. Personal data processed for any purpose or purposes shall not be kept for longer than is necessary for that purpose or those purposes.

6. Personal data shall be processed in accordance with the rights of data subjects under the Act.

7. Appropriate technical and organizational measures shall be taken against unauthorized or unlawful processing of personal data and against accidental loss or destruction of, or damage to, personal data.

8. Personal data shall not be transferred to a country or territory outside the European Economic Area unless that country or territory ensures an adequate level of protection for the rights and freedoms of data subjects in relation to the processing of personal data.

The Individual’s Right to Access Personal Data Being Processed

Upon individual written request, EmployeeScreen IQ will inform you of whether any personal data of which you are the subject is being processed. If personal data of this nature is being processed, you have the right to receive (1) a description of the personal data, (2) the purposes for which the data is being processed, (3) a list of the recipients to whom the data may be disclosed, and (4) information regarding the source of the data. The information provided to you will be in a format that is easy to understand. All such written requests must be sent by letter or e-mail to the primary contact person listed at the end of this policy.

Exceptions to the Right to Access Personal Data

Pursuant to the Data Protection Act of 1998, there are several situations in which an individual does not have the right to request personal data. For example, you may not receive information located in your personal data which identifies another individual, unless either (1) the other individual provides permission or (2) it is “reasonable” to comply with the request without the consent of the individual. In addition, you do not have a right to personal data processed for the prevention or detection of crime, the apprehension or prosecution of offenders, or the assessment or collection of any tax or duty. Furthermore, parts of the personal data containing information constituting a trade secret or providing the logic involved in any decision-making may be withheld from disclosure. The Secretary of State may provide or order additional exemptions relating to health, education, social work, or government functions.

Safe Harbor Provisions of Our Privacy Policy

EmployeeScreen IQ is committed to protecting the privacy of personal data that is gathered and maintained on behalf of employers requesting consumer data inquiries. We certify that, in relation to personal data collected in the European Union, we adhere to the seven “Safe Harbor Principles” of the United States Department of Commerce as outlined in the European Commission’s Directive on Data Protection. Our adherence to the seven Safe Harbor Principles is demonstrated below:

1. Notice
EmployeeScreen IQ gathers and maintains consumer data, which it provides to employers or their agents (such as recruiters or staffing firms) for use in making employment-related decisions, such as who to hire, retain, promote, or re-assign. Provided below is an illustrative list of common ways in which employers use the data provided by this service:

Performance of background checks,

* Verification of the credentials of job applicants and current employees,

Investigation into a suspicion of work-related misconduct or wrongdoing,

* Investigation into matters of employee compliance with employer policies, or

Investigation into matters of employee compliance with Federal, State, or local laws and regulations.

The scope of this notice covers consumer report data that EmployeeScreen IQ has obtained on behalf of employers by manually contacting the appropriate sources of the data (court records, references, licensing bureaus, etc.).

More information regarding the nature and scope of consumer data inquiries is available by contacting EmployeeScreen IQ in writing or by e-mail at the addresses listed below.

2. Choice
EmployeeScreen IQ affords individuals the opportunity to choose whether their personal information will be disclosed to a third party or will be used for a purpose incompatible with the purpose for which it was originally collected or subsequently authorized by the individual. Therefore, consumer data may be disseminated under these circumstances unless the consumer explicitly “opts-out.” Where a consumer chooses to “opt-out,” the data is not necessarily erased or deleted. Various laws require that the data be maintained on file for a specified period of time for consumer protection purposes.

A consumer can “opt-out” by contacting EmployeeScreen IQ in writing or by e-mail at the addresses listed below.

With respect to sensitive information, however, an individual must “opt-in” to the disclosure of the information to a third party or to the use of this information for a purpose other than its original purpose or that purpose authorized subsequently by the individual. In other words, unless a consumer chooses to provide explicit consent, a disclosure of sensitive information to a third party or for an unauthorized purpose will not be made.

3. Onward Transfer (Transfers to Third Parties)
With respect to the transfer of consumer data to third parties, the principles of “Notice” and “Choice” apply. Accordingly, data is only provided to an employer or its agent for purposes described in the “Notice” section, and will not be disseminated to a third party where a consumer has “opted-out” or, in the case of sensitive information, failed to “opt-in.”

EmployeeScreen IQ will disclose consumer data to employers or their agents who certify that they subscribe to the Safe Harbor Principles or are subject to the Data Protection Directive or another adequacy finding. In the alternative, EmployeeScreen IQ will also disclose consumer data to employers or their agents who enter into a written agreement with EmployeeScreen IQ, in which the third party agrees to provide at least the same level of privacy protection as is required by the seven Safe Harbor Principles.

4. Access
A consumer may request, in writing, access to all data collected and maintained about him or her. EmployeeScreen IQ affords the consumer a reasonable opportunity to correct, amend, or delete information that is inaccurate or incomplete, except where the burden or expense of providing access would be disproportionate to the risks to the individual’s privacy, or where the rights of persons other than the individual would be violated.

Pursuant to the United States federal Fair Credit Reporting Act, any citizen of the United States may obtain a copy of their consumer report free of charge. We reserve the right, however, to charge an administrative fee not to exceed $15 to cover the cost of reviewing our records and obtaining and forwarding any information for consumers who are not citizens of the United States .

EmployeeScreen IQ reserves the right to engage in reasonable efforts to confirm the identity of the individual requesting the data to ensure the information is provided only to the subject of the data.

EmployeeScreen IQ makes every effort to ensure that the data we collect and store is as accurate as possible. We cannot guarantee, however, that third parties are committed to making the same efforts, and therefore, we deny any responsibility for the accuracy of the data they provide.

How to Apply for Access to Personal Data
To request information relating to your personal data you may contact EmployeeScreen IQ in writing or by e-mail at the addresses listed below. In addition, you will be asked to provide sufficient evidence of your identity so we may ensure that information is being released to the correct individual.

5. Security
This service takes all reasonable procedures to protect personal and identifiable information from loss, misuse and unauthorized access, disclosure, alteration and destruction. The service utilizes SSL encryption to protect sensitive information online; we also do everything in our power to protect user-information off-line. All of our users’ information, not just the sensitive information mentioned above, is kept strictly confidential in our offices. Only employees who need the information to perform a specific job are granted access to personally identifiable information. Strong password protection protocols are used on all computers. Furthermore, all employees are kept up-to-date on our security and privacy practices. Finally, the servers that are used to store personally identifiable information are kept in a secure environment, with appropriate security measures.

If you have any questions about the security of our service, you can send a letter or an e-mail to the contact person listed below.

6. Data Integrity
EmployeeScreen IQ takes reasonable steps to ensure that data collected is accurate, complete, current, and reliable for its intended use. We only collect data that is strictly necessary for the purposes listed under the section entitled “Notice,” including (but not limited to) information that is necessary to identify the consumer.

7. Enforcement
This service verifies adherence to the EU Safe Harbor Policy via in-house verification by the management of this company.

This service is also member of the Better Business Bureau and the Better Business Bureau Online Privacy Seal Program. If there is a dispute about our privacy policy, the Better Business Bureau is available to resolve it. A complaint with respect to the privacy practices of this service and be made by visiting the Better Business Bureau web site at

Contact Information

You may send any question regarding our Privacy Policy to the following address and contact person:

Mr. Jason Morris

EmployeeScreen IQ

4853 Galaxy Parkway, Bldg. K

Cleveland, OH 44128

United States of America

Any changes that are made to the existing privacy policy of EmployeeScreen IQ will be posted on this website.


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EmployeeScreenIQ Frequently Asked Questions
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EmployeeScreenIQ’s COO and president Jason Morris is available to speak to your organization about the importance of background screening.

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Visit our corporate site for more information about EmployeeScreenIQ.