Tag Archives: credit checks

Equal Employment for All Act Would Prohibit Employers from Using Credit Report Checks when Hiring

Congressman Steve Cohen (D-Tennessee-09) has introduced legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives – H.R. 645, the ‘Equal Employment for All Act’ – that would amend the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) to prohibit employers from using credit report checks and bankruptcy filings when hiring or making adverse employment decisions. Under H.R. 645, some exceptions allowing the use of credit reports would include jobs requiring security clearance, state or local government jobs, or certain individuals working in the financial industry. The full text of ‘the ‘Equal Employment for All Act’ is available at http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/BILLS-113hr645ih/pdf/BILLS-113hr645ih.pdf. Continue reading

FTC Study on Credit Report Accuracy Finds One in Five Consumers has Error on Their Credit Reports

A Federal Trade Commission (FTC) study of accuracy in the U.S. credit reporting industry has found that one in five consumers – an estimated 40 million Americans, according to a ‘60 Minutes’ report on the FTC study – had an error on at least one of their three major credit reports while five percent had significant errors on one of their credit reports that could result in less favorable terms for auto loans and insurance. The full text of the FTC report is available at http://www.ftc.gov/os/2013/02/130211factareport.pdf. Continue reading

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Begins Accepting Credit Reporting Complaints from Consumers

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has begun to accept consumer complaints about credit reporting, marking the first time consumers will receive individual-level credit reporting complaint assistance at the federal level. The CFPB already handles complaints on credit cards, mortgages, bank accounts, and consumer and private student loans. To file a credit reporting complaint, consumers may call 1-855-411-CFPB (2372) Toll Free or file online at http://www.consumerfinance.gov/complaint/. Continue reading

EEOC Must Testify On Own Use of Criminal Background Checks and Credit Histories for Employment Screening

A federal district Court in Maryland has ruled that an employer sued by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) for alleged discriminatory use of criminal background checks and credit histories in hiring may compel the EEOC the testify regarding the agency’s own use of criminal records and credit information for employment screening. The ruling EEOC v. Freeman, D. Md., No. 09-2573, 8/14/12 is available here: http://op.bna.com/dlrcases.nsf/id/kmgn-8x7jwz/$File/freemanprotect.pdf. Continue reading

Credit Background Checks of Applicants Not Used by More than Half of Organizations According to Survey

A survey from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) “Background Checking — The Use of Credit Background Checks in Hiring Decisions” indicates that more than half of the responding organizations – 53 percent – do not conduct credit background checks on any of their job candidates, a noticeable  increase from 40 percent in 2010 and from 39 percent in 2004. The survey of randomly selected HR professionals from SHRM’s membership is available at: http://www.shrm.org/Research/SurveyFindings/Articles/Pages/CreditBackgroundChecks.aspx. Continue reading

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Adopts Rule to Supervise Larger Credit Reporting Companies

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has adopted a rule to begin supervising larger consumer reporting agencies – including the “big three” credit reporting companies Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion – for the first time at the federal level, according to a CFPB press release ‘Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to supervise credit reporting.’ The rule outlining the CFPB’s supervision of larger consumer reporting agencies, which will be effective September 30, 2012, is available here: ‘Defining Larger Participants of the Consumer Reporting Market.’ Continue reading

Vermont to Prohibit Employers from Using Credit Reports for Employment Decisions Starting July 1

Continuing the trend of states stopping employers from routinely obtaining credit reports on applicants and employees to use in making employment decisions, Vermont Act No. 154 (S. 95) prohibits employers in the state, subject to various exceptions, from using or inquiring into credit reports or credit histories of job applicants and employees in the employment context and further prohibits discriminating against individuals based on their credit information. Vermont is the eighth state to restrict the use of credit reports by employers, joining California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Oregon, and Washington. The text of the new law, which goes into effect July 1, 2012, is available at: http://www.leg.state.vt.us/docs/2012/bills/Passed/S-095.pdf. Continue reading

Chamber of Commerce Urges OMB to Require EEOC to Allow Public Input on Background Check Guidance

In a recent letter to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), the U.S. Chamber of Commerce urged the OMB to require the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the nation’s leading enforcer of employment anti-discrimination laws, to allow a review by the OMB and public input as the EEOC prepares to issue new enforcement guidance on the use of criminal background checks and credit background checks by employers. The text of the letter from the Chamber regarding ‘Forthcoming Significant Guidance from EEOC on Employer Use of Credit and Criminal History’ is available at: http://op.bna.com/dlrcases.nsf/id/kmgn-8szk2j/$File/ChamberCrim.pdf. Continue reading

Colorado Bill Restricting Credit Report Checks of Job Applicants for Employment Screening Defeated

A State House committee in Colorado has voted to defeat legislation – SB-3, The ‘Employment Opportunity Act’ – that would have restricted the use of credit report checks of job applicants by employers for employment screening, The Denver Post reports, and the vote against SB-3 “ran along party lines with six Republicans voting against five Democrats on the committee.” The full Post story is at: http://www.denverpost.com/breakingnews/ci_20208956/house-panel-kills-bill-stop-credit-check-job. Continue reading

Background Check Webinar Shows How to Legally Use Credit Checks and Social Media Searches

Attorney at Law and safe hiring expert Lester Rosen, founder and CEO of nationwide accredited background check firm Employment Screening Resources (ESR), will present the Business & Legal Resources (BLR) webinar ‘Background Checks: How to Legally Use Credit Inquires, Social Media Searches, and More’ on Thursday, March 22, 2012 from 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. PST (1:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. EST). For more information about the webinar, visit: http://catalog.blr.com/product.cfm?product=30756000. Continue reading