Category Archives: Recent Posts

Ohio Law Reforms Collateral Sanctions and Offers Protections for Employers Hiring Job Applicants with Criminal Records

The State of Ohio has passed new laws that will offer protections for employers hiring job applicants with criminal records.  The law, Senate Bill 337, which takes effect September 28, 2012, is an extensive reform of the collateral sanctions that impose employment restrictions and limitations on over 2 million Ohioans with misdemeanor and felony convictions. With SB 337, Ohio joins states such as Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Massachusetts, New York, and North Carolina in offering protections for employers that hire and employ rehabilitated ex-offenders from tort liability for negligent hiring and retention claims. The text of Senate Bill 337 is available at Continue reading

State E-Verify Laws for Employment Eligibility Verification of Workers Detailed in New Report

The Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) has released a new report, ‘An Overview of E-Verify Policies at the State Level,’ that details the growing use of the federal E-Verify electronic employment eligibility verification system by states to establish the legal work authorization status of newly hired employees in the United States. The July 2012 report is available on the CIS website at: Continue reading

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program Beginning August 15 May Add 1.7 Million New Workers in US

Beginning today, August 15, 2012, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) – a government agency within the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) that oversees lawful immigration to the United States – will begin accepting requests for the ‘Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals’ amnesty program that could lead to an estimated 1.7 million new workers in the United States. Unauthorized immigrants 30-years-old and under who entered the U.S. before the age of 16 without documentation may now apply to remain in and to work in the country. More information is available on the USCIS website at or by calling USCIS at 1-800-375-5283. Continue reading

USCIS Tells Employers to Use Current Employment Eligibility Verification Form I-9 Past August 31 Expiration Date

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) – the government agency that oversees lawful immigration to the United States – has announced that, until further notice, employers in the United States should continue to use the current version the Employment Eligibility Verification Form I-9 (Rev. 08/07/09) even after its Office of Management and Budget (OMB) control number expiration date of August 31, 2012. The bulletin sent by the USCIS for the announcement is available here: ‘Continue to Use the Current Form I-9 for Employment Eligibility Verification’. Continue reading

Accuracy of Criminal Background Checks by Employers Examined in Two Recent NY Times Editorials

In another sign that accuracy is becoming the number one issue with criminal background checks of job applicants, possibly even more so than issues of discrimination and privacy, two recent editorials published in the New York Times – ‘Faulty Criminal Background Checks’ and ‘Accuracy in Criminal Background Checks’ – both examined the accuracy of criminal background checks used by employers and called for more regulation of the screening industry by the federal government. The NY Times editorials are available at and Continue reading

Ban the Box Act would Prohibit Most Employers from Asking Applicants about Criminal Records until Job Offer

New legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives – H.R. 6220, “Ban the Box Act of 2012” –  would prohibit most employers from asking about or checking a job applicant’s criminal record until after a conditional offer of employment and would “ban the box” that job applicants are asked to mark indicating whether they have a criminal record. Introduced by Representative Hansen Clarke (D-MI), H.R. 6220 would allow employers to check an applicant’s criminal record only if the job duties in question “may involve an unreasonable risk to the safety of specific individuals or to the general public.” The text of the bill is available here: H.R. 6220, “Ban the Box Act of 2012”. Continue reading

Background Screening Firms must Modify Forms Mandated by Fair Credit Reporting Act by January 1 2013

According to regulations from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), three essential forms mandated by the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) used in the background screening process must be modified by January 1, 2013. The forms must be changed to reflect that consumers can obtain information about their rights under the FCRA from the CFPB instead of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The three forms in use currently indicate that the FTC is the agency consumers can contact with questions. The regulation with the original revised forms is available online here. For more current CFPB forms, read the ESR News blog ‘Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Announces New Corrected Forms Required by FCRA for Background Checks Starting January 1 2013′. Continue reading

Background Screening Company to Pay 2.6 Million Dollar Penalty to Settle FTC Charges of Multiple FCRA Violations

In a case representing the first time the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has charged a background screening company that delivers reports to employers with violating the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), a leading background screening firm, also known as a consumer reporting agency (“CRA”), has agreed to pay a $2.6 million penalty to settle charges that it violated the FCRA multiple times. A press release from the FTC about the settlement is available at: Continue reading

Illinois Law Prevents Employers from Demanding Social Network Passwords from Employees and Job Candidates

A new law makes Illinois the second state to prevent employers from demanding social network passwords as Governor Pat Quinn recently signed legislation – House Bill 3782 (HB 3782) – that protects the right to privacy of current employees and job applicants by making it illegal for employers to request social network account information such as usernames or passwords to gain access to their accounts or profiles. The full text of the law, which takes effect January 1, 2013, is available here: Illinois House Bill 3782 (HB 3782). Continue reading

July 2012 BLS and ADP Employment Reports Both Show Gain of 163000 Jobs during Month

Total nonfarm payroll employment in the United States rose by 163,000 jobs in July 2012 while the unemployment rate and the number of unemployed persons rose slightly to 8.3 percent and 12.8 million respectively, according to ‘THE EMPLOYMENT SITUATION — JULY 2012’ report released by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The Employment Situation for July 2012 will be available at until the Employment Situation for August 2012 is released on Friday, September 7, 2012. Continue reading