To help show employers how to conduct legal background checks, Jared Callahan of Employment Screening Resources (ESR) will present a webinar with Business & Legal Resources (BLR) titled ‘Background Checks: How to Legally Use Criminal Records, Social Media Searches, and More’ on Thursday, September 13, 2012 from 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. PST (1:30 to 3:00 p.m. EST). For more information about the webinar, visit: http://catalog.blr.com/product.cfm/product/30744400. Continue reading
To help Human Resources professionals stay in compliance with new laws regulating background checks in California, Jared Callahan, Director of Business Development for San Francisco-area background check firm Employment Screening Resources (ESR) and a licensed Private Investigator, will present the session “How to Comply with California’s Two New Laws Regarding Background Checks” at the annual San Francisco HR Star Conference on Wednesday, July 18, 2012. For more information about the one day conference, which will be held from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Pacific Time at the South San Francisco Conference Center in South San Francisco, CA, visit: http://www.hrstarconference.com/sf/. Continue reading
To help Human Resources professionals comply with new background check laws in California, Jared Callahan, the Director of Business Development for background check firm Employment Screening Resources (ESR) and a licensed Private Investigator, will present the session “How to Comply with California’s Two New Laws Regarding Background Checks” at the Los Angeles HR Star Conference on Wednesday, February 29, 2012 at the Los Angeles Convention Center in Los Angeles, California. To register for the LA HR Star conference, which takes place from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., visit: http://www.hrstarconference.com/la/. Continue reading
Jared Callahan, a licensed Private Investigator and Director of Business Development for California-based nationwide background check firm Employment Screening Resources (ESR), will be the guest speaker for the Employer Resource Institute webinar titled ‘Background Checks in California: How to Legally Probe, Snoop, and Sniff Out Applicants Who Spell T-R-O-U-B-L-E’ on Tuesday, September 27, 2011 from 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Noon (Pacific). For more information about the webinar or to register for this event, visit http://ced.blr.com/webinars/p/20110927-background-checks.aspx.
By Thomas Ahearn, Employment Screening Resources (ESR) News Editor
A recent article from Inc.com, ‘How to Run a Credit Check,’ reveals best practices from experts for every step of the credit check process during employment screening so that employers may check the financial stability of potential employees.
According to the Inc.com article, employers using credit checks must consider the strong protections for potential employees that are built into federal regulations. They also need to be prepared for what to do with the results of the credit check and whether a bad credit history should automatically disqualify a job applicant from working at their business.
Financial background check experts – including Jared Callahan, Director of Client Relations for Employment Screening Resources (ESR) – agree the following five basic steps should be followed to get the most out of credit checks:
- Step #1 – Have a Permissible Use
- Step #2 – Get Permission
- Step #3 – Find a Service to Use
- Step #4 – Interpreting the Results
- Step #5 – Do a Test Run
Step #1 – Have a Permissible Use
The federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) dictates what constitutes a permissible use for credit reports:
- In connection with a credit transaction;
- Employment purposes;
- Underwriting of insurance;
- Professional licensing; and
- Account review or other legitimate business needs.
For employment purposes, Callahan says only potential employees seeking jobs related to financial responsibilities should be subjected to a credit check: “If you’ve got ditch diggers out in the middle of nowhere, a credit check might not be relevant.” Employers also need to make sure the credit report is for a relevant purpose and that they are not arbitrarily digging into someone’s financial history.
Step #2 – Get Permission
Federal law requires employers always disclose when they seek to run a credit check on job applicants and they need to get their permission in writing too, along with personal information since credit check agencies require a full name and Social Security number. “The candidate’s rights are absolutely bulletproof protected by the Fed and the state you are in,” Callahan says.
Step #3 – Find a Service to Use
After attaining the permission of applicants, employers running credit checks on potential employees may use services such as Employment Screening Resources (ESR) that provide special employment-only credit checks with other background check information. These services usually charge a fee to run a credit check.
Step #4 – Interpreting the Results
Experts advise that standards for weighing the results should be established before employers start running credit checks on job applicants and that it is important to have a plan in place for what items will signal “red flags” or warning signs.
However, Callahan warns employers against jumping to a conclusion no matter what the credit report says since up to 75 percent of all credit reports contain incorrect information, including wrong home addresses and inaccurate bankruptcy details. “You really have to take a credit report with a grain of salt,” says Callahan, who also suggests that employers give subjects of credit reports a chance to respond and produce authentication for any financial points appearing on the credit report.
Step #5 – Do a Test Run
Consumers can run their own credit reports since the FCRA allows consumers to receive one free credit report a year from each of the three main reporting agencies: Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian. Consumers running their own credit check can keep on top of financial issues such as identity theft while finding and correcting inaccurate information. Government regulations make it easy to go online and contest the details of credit reports.
Employment Screening Resources (ESR) – a leading background check provider accredited by The National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS®) – recommends that employers should approach the use of credit reports for employment purposes with caution and use them only if there is a business justification. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is very concerned about the use of credit reports for employment purposes and has filed legal actions against some firms that use credit reports alleging that it results in a disparate or discriminatory impact.
In addition, some states are considering, or have passed, legislation to restrict the use of credit reports for employment purposes. For example, effective January 3, 2011, the State of Illinois restricts employers from using credit reports for employment purposes. Under Illinois House Bill 4658 ‘The Employee Credit Privacy Act,’ employers in Illinois may not use a person’s credit history to determine employment, recruiting, discharge, or compensation.
The Inc.com article ‘How to Run a Credit Check’ is available at http://www.inc.com/guides/2010/12/how-to-run-a-credit-check.html.
For more information about credit checks, visit the Employment Screening Resources (ESR) website at http://www.ESRcheck.com.
Founded in 1996 in the San Francisco Bay area, Employment Screening Resources (ESR) is the company that wrote the book on background checks with ‘The Safe Hiring Manual’ by ESR founder and President Lester Rosen. Employment Screening Resources is accredited by The National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS®) Background Screening Credentialing Council (BSCC) for proving compliance with the Background Screening Agency Accreditation Program (BSAAP). ESR was the third U.S. background check firm to be ‘Safe Harbor’ Certified for data privacy protection. To learn more about ESR’s Leadership, Resources, and Solutions, visit http://www.ESRcheck.com or contact Jared Callahan, ESR Director of Client Relations, at 415.898.0044 or jcallahan@ESRcheck.com.
By Thomas Ahearn, ESR News Blog
Jared Callahan, Director of Client Relations at San Francisco area-based Employment Screening Resources (ESR), the company that literally wrote the book on background checks, will speak at a session titled ‘Criminal Record Reporting from an Operational Perspective’ at the National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS®) 2010 Mid-Year Meeting in La Jolla, California on Tuesday, October 12. The session takes place from 3:00 p.m. to 3:50 p.m. with a repeat session from 4:00 p.m. to 4:50 p.m. Both sessions are in Pavilion II.
For more information about speakers and session descriptions, visit the NAPBS website at http://www.napbs.com/ or view the 2010 Mid-Year Meeting Conference Program at http://www.napbs.com/files/events/midyearmtg/2010/Program_Layout.pdf.
Joining Callahan on the panel for the session ‘Criminal Record Reporting from an Operational Perspective’ will be Christine Cunneen of Hire Image, LLC and Fred Giles of CARCO Group. The three panelists will review the myriad of criminal record reporting regulations mandated by National and State laws that CRAs are responsible for complying with, and how they affect day-to-day operations.
In addition to being a licensed private investigator in the state of California, Callahan also works with employers to conduct background checks and screenings and teaches them about legal compliance efforts across the 50 United States. He began his career in employment screening in 1996 with a private investigative firm and has also worked as an investigator in the special investigations unit of a large workers compensation insurance company.
Callahan has presented to the HR Star Conference, CUPA HR, National Human Resources Association, Employment Advisory Council, California Hospital Association, Washington State Healthcare HR Association, National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), and currently sits on the Editorial Review Board of the California Employer Advisor.
Founded in 2003 as a non-profit trade association, NAPBS® serves to represent the interest of companies offering background screening. Their mission is to promote ethical business practices, compliance with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), and awareness of issues related to consumer protection and privacy rights within the background screening industry.
The NAPBS® 2010 Mid-Year Meeting – with the theme of ‘Navigating Uncertain Waters: Effective Leadership in Today’s Market’ – lasts from Sunday, October 10 to Tuesday, October 12 at the Hilton Torrey Pines in La Jolla, California. During the opening ceremony on Sunday, the Background Screening Credentialing Council (BSCC) is expected to announce companies that have achieved accreditation in the Background Screening Agency Accreditation Program (BSAAP).
About Employment Screening Resources (ESR):
Founded in 1996 in the San Francisco area, Employment Screening Resources (ESR) literally wrote the book on background checks with ‘The Safe Hiring Manual’ by ESR founder and President Lester Rosen. The company is a leading provider of information, education, and training on “all things background checks” and is dedicated to promoting a safe workplace for both employers and employees. In 2003, ESR was rated the top U.S. employment screening firm in the first independent study of the industry. To learn more about Employment Screening Resources, visit http://www.ESRcheck.com or contact Jared Callahan at 415.898.0044 or jcallahan@ESRcheck.com.