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Personal Background Checks

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AutoZone

Memphis-based AutoZone Inc. (NYSE: AZO) is the latest company to be reluctantly inducted into the FCRA class action club. The company was hit with a suit for alleged violations of state and federal law in its background screening process. The case, Aceves et al. v. AutoZone Inc, filed on September 30, 2014 in the Central District of California, claims that the retailer violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), California’s Consumer Credit Reporting Agencies Act (CCRAA) and the Investigative Consumer Reporting Agency Act (ICRAA). [...]

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EmployeeScreenIQ president and chief operating officer, Jason B. Morris will present, “My Candidate Has a Criminal Record. Now What?” at the HR Florida Conference & Expo in Orlando, Florida on October 6, 2014, 4:15pm-5:15pm.

Not a month went by in 2013 without a multi-million dollar lawsuit filed against an employer for their background screening practices.

While a criminal record should not automatically disqualify a candidate, employers also want to protect their company by properly screening candidates. [...]

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EEOC

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued a press release this week announcing it reached a settlement with a background screening company over the company’s pre-employment screening services. According to the press release, the company is a consumer reporting agency (CRA), that “screens applicants for hundreds of companies nationwide.”

The agreement requires the company to change its website, screening policies, and training procedures to ensure compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), the Genetic Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 (GINA), and anti-retaliation laws. The underlying concern was that an investigation into an applicant’s medical history, history of personal injury, or workers compensation claims would be used by prospective employers to discriminate against the applicant.

If anyone wondered whether the EEOC would eventually extend its reach to CRAs, that question has been answered. The press release quotes Janet Elizondo, director of the EEOC’s Dallas District Office:

“It is important for the EEOC to engage, not only with employers directly, but also with their business partners who play an important role in facilitating connections between jobs and job seekers.”

Background screening companies take note, the EEOC is watching.




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Compliance Employment Background Checks

For those interested in staying up-to-date with the latest in compliance for pre-employment background screening and the laws that affect your use of employment background checks, follow our publication, BTW: Your Guide to Staying Out of Hot Water. This compliance resource has been created by our VP of Compliance and General Counsel, Angela Preston, and is a must-read for human resources and security professionals.

Building a Smarter Sharing Economy with Background Checks

It’s nice to share. At least that’s what we learned as kids. But for some people, sharing is more than just nice—it’s a way to make a buck. I’m talking about the sharing economy, which Forbes estimates at $3.5 billion this year, with growth exceeding 25%. Read More

Employers’ Hands are Tied: New Washington D.C. Law Goes Beyond Ban the Box

With over a year of debate and some last minute amendments, the District of Columbia’s Council passed a ban-the-box law that includes its own unique list of considerations before an employer can withdraw an offer of employment based on criminal history. Read More

Congress Criticizes the EEOC’s Policy on Background Checks

Congress is showing signs of life in the constant fight for employers to conduct reasonable background checks. Representative Tim Walberg, R, Mich., chairman of the House Subcommittee on Workforce Protections, held the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s feet to the fire in a hearing on September 17, 2014. Read More



 

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Employment Background checks

It’s nice to share. At least that’s what we learned as kids. But for some people, sharing is more than just nice—it’s a way to make a buck. I’m talking about the sharing economy, which Forbes estimates at $3.5 billion this year, with growth exceeding 25%.  

For the uninitiated, in very simple terms, the sharing economy is a model where you loan out your stuff for a fee. It’s access over ownership. And the more we experiment with sharing as a business, the more participants are challenged by legal concerns, regulation, and operational details. Since one of the basic tenants of sharing is trust in the person and the product being shared, it’s time for some segments of the sharing economy to adopt a process that other business models have already embraced and acknowledged as a necessity—I’m talking about background checks. [...]

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NFL Players Announce Criminal Records

For those of you that don’t know me well, I’m a huge fan of the National Football League.  I’ve had the misfortune of growing up as a Cleveland Browns fan and, well it’s kind of stuck with me.  Put on a game with any two teams and I’m glued to the TV for four hours.

You don’t have to be a football fan to know that the league is facing an unprecedented and well-deserved amount of negative publicity over the criminal transgressions of some of its players; none more ugly than domestic abuse charges against now-former Baltimore Raven, Ray Rice, Carolina Panther Greg Hardy and Minnesota Viking Adrian Peterson. [...]

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Ban the box

With over a year of debate and some last minute amendments, the District of Columbia’s Council passed a ban-the-box law that includes its own unique list of considerations before an employer can withdraw an offer of employment based on criminal history.

Council vote was 12-1; only Chairman Phil Mendelson (D) voted against the bill. In an interview, Mendelson said that he supports the “basic thrust” of the legislation but that late amendments were “troublesome,” giving ex-offenders greater rights in the hiring process than other citizens. “This goes way beyond ‘ban the box’ and into telling businesses how to hire,” he said. “How much do we want to regulate how a business wants to hire somebody?” Exactly. [...]

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background checks ride-sharing

The Wall Street Journal reported yesterday that the three big ride-sharing services, Sidecar, Uber and Lyft, have received warning letters from the district attorneys of San Francisco and Los Angeles. The letters focus on two components of the ride-sharing business: background checks and car-pooling features. The D.A.s claim that the companies’ practices violate California law, and they’re threatening them with civil penalties and injunctions. Ironically, California is the home state for all three companies, and the place where ride sharing first became popular. [...]

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EEOC Policy on Background Checks

Congress is showing signs of life in the constant fight for employers to conduct reasonable background checks. Representative Tim Walberg, R, Mich., chairman of the House Subcommittee on Workforce Protections, held the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s feet to the fire in a hearing on September 17, 2014. The hearing focused on three recently introduced bills aimed to increase the accountability and transparency of the EEOC and to offer employers limited protections in the use of criminal history. [...]

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BMW Questions EEOC Background Screening Practices

What’s good for the goose is good for the gander. Or so thinks BMW, who has asked a federal court to compel the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to produce documents relating to any policy, guideline, standard or practice used by the workplace bias watchdog in weighing the criminal conviction records of applicants looking to work for the agency.

The Case

You might recall that EEOC is suing BMW Manufacturing Co. LLC for their use over their use of criminal background checks in hiring which they allege discriminate against minorities. Here’s a quick recap. [...]

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