Earlier this month the CFPB released a report on the background screening industry. The report details how background reports including criminal records are generated, how those reports are used by employers and issues those reports can have with accuracy. The report also explains the potential hire’s rights when consumer reports are used for employment including the requirement for prior notice, written consent and a pre-adverse action report.
Employers need to take note of the requirements laid forth by the FCRA that this report highlights. The CFPB, private attorneys and other agencies are working hard to ensure potential employees know their rights when it comes to criminal record checks and other background screening reports. This handout from the CFPB highlights the requirements for background screening that consumers should be aware of. If your company violates these procedures it is more and more possible that you will find yourself in a costly FCRA lawsuit.
The best thing you can do to ensure your company is compliant is to follow the FCRA procedures by using a consumer reporting agency like HireSafe where the required steps are built into the background check system. Our partner TazWorks portal uses the QuickApp to provide notice and request consent. In addition to providing their consent, potential hires must fill in their own address history and other information, allowing your office to avoid the extra costs of transcribing that information from a potential hire. Finally, if the background check information that comes back may cause you not to offer them a position, the HireSafe portal includes a pre-adverse action, and final adverse action notice. You can read more about how to handle adverse action here.
Applicants can learn more on their rights with resources like the below provided by the CFPB, employers should review these as well to be sure they are providing the correct disclosures and following compliant processes.
- CFPB Blog: Applying for a job? It’s important to know what goes into your background screening reports
- Information on CFPB December workshop on Accuracy in Consumer Reporting
- CFBP Market Snapshot: Background Screening Reports – Criminal background checks in employment
- Consumer Reporting List information from the CFPB