Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn
A class action lawsuit that claims a technology company that provides a request tool to facilitate transportation allegedly performed illegal background checks that violated the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and state credit reporting laws was recently filed in a Northern California federal court, according to a story on the TopClassActions.com website.
TopClassActions.com reports that the class action lawsuit alleges that Uber Technologies – along with its subsidiary and a company that performs background checks – “knowingly violated” federal and state laws when checking on drivers applying to utilize a mobile app that helps users find transportation. The plaintiff in the class action lawsuit – a Boston, MA cabdriver – claims he was employed as an “Uber Black” driver and hoped to become and “Uber X” driver so he bought a new car to comply with Uber X requirements.
The plaintiff then received an email indicating that because of information from a consumer report provided by a background check company the employer was “unable to further consider” his proposal to become an Uber X driver, TopClassActions.com reports. The plaintiff also claims he did not receive a copy of the consumer report “in accordance with the Fair Credit Reporting Act” and also did not receive a “pre-adverse action notice” that would give him a chance to explain the contents of the consumer report.
According to the class action lawsuit filed on November 24, 2014, credit reporting laws give businesses guidelines for how consumer background checks may be used for hiring or firing employees. The class action lawsuit explains that an employer must “first disclose its intent to use a background report in its hiring decision and must obtain the prospective employee’s written authorization to do so, and the employer’s disclosure must be ‘in a document that consists solely of the disclosure.’”
In addition, the class action lawsuit explains that businesses should provide copies of the consumer reports and a copy of ‘A Summary of Your Rights Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act’ to subjects of consumer reports. Top Class Actions reports that because “misreported information can and does often lead to grave consequences for the job seeker,” businesses should give subjects of credit reports “a reasonable opportunity to dispute the information” before “any adverse” decisions about employment.
TopClassActions.com also reports that the same rights for consumer reports and credit reports are granted in California, where Uber is headquartered, and Massachusetts, where the plaintiff lives and works. California law also mandates that employers notify the subject of the report in writing that a consumer credit report will be performed and that the notice should contain “the source of the report” and “a box that the person may check off to receive a copy of the credit report.”
The class action lawsuit is Mohamed v. Uber Technologies Inc et al., Case No. 3:14-cv-05200, in the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of California. A copy of the class action lawsuit complaint over background checks is available here.
NOTE: Employment Screening Resources (ESR) reminds readers of this ESR News blog that any allegations made in a class action lawsuit are not proof that a business or Consumer Reporting Agency (CRA) violated any law, rule, or regulation. There have been only allegations in the pleading stage and no factual adjudications. The fact that a demand for a jury trial has been made in the class action lawsuit does not mean there has been a finding of any liability or that any facts have been determined or any settlement entered into at the current time.
More Information about Class Action Lawsuits from ESR
Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – ‘The Background Check Authority®’ – is a nationwide screening firm accredited by the National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS). For more information about FCRA compliant background checks, call Toll Free 888.999.4474 or visit http://www.esrcheck.com. To read more ESR News blogs with information about class action lawsuits involving background checks, please visit http://www.esrcheck.com/wordpress/tag/class-action-lawsuits/.