Tag Archives: State laws

More than 300 South Carolina Businesses Cited for E-Verify Violations

South Carolina state labor department officials have cited 323 businesses for violating a 2011 law requiring employers to use the federal E-Verify employment eligibility verification system to determine if newly hired employees can work legally in the United States, according to a report on The State website. Less than 10 percent of companies that were part of first year of mandatory immigration checks failed to comply with the law. The article is available at http://www.thestate.com/2013/03/25/2693045/more-than-300-sc-companies-cited.html. Continue reading

Access to Public Court Records in California Threatened by Proposed Search Fee in Trailer Bill

In a move that could significantly limit access to public court records, a trailer bill written by the California Administrative Office of the Courts proposes to charge a $10 fee on nearly every court file requested by members of the general public – including journalists and court researchers who review a large amount of files for news stories and background checks – according to an article on the Courthouse News Service website. The article is available at http://www.courthousenews.com/2013/03/13/55701.htm. Continue reading

Ban the Box Legislation Introduced in New Jersey to Restrict Criminal History Questions for Employment

Legislation recently introduced in the New Jersey Senate – Senate Bill No. 2586, ‘The Opportunity to Compete Act’ (OCA) – would “ban the box” asking about criminal histories on job applications and restrict questions by employers about criminal records of current employees or applicants. The OCA would also prohibit employers in New Jersey from inquiring about the criminal history of job applicants until after a “conditional offer of employment” is made. The full text of Senate Bill No. 2586, ‘The Opportunity to Compete Act’ is available at http://www.njleg.state.nj.us/2012/Bills/S3000/2586_I1.PDF. Continue reading

Social Networking Online Protection Act would Prevent Employers and Schools from Requiring Usernames and Passwords

Legislation currently in Congress – H. R. 537, the Social Networking Online Protection Act (SNOPA) – would enhance social media privacy by protecting users of social networking sites from having to divulge personal information such as usernames and passwords to employers and schools. Re-introduced by Congressman Eliot Engel (D-NY-16), Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky (D-IL-9), and Congressman Michael Grimm (R-NY-11), SNOPA would protect employees, job applicants, students, and people facing disciplinary action from being required to give information used to access online accounts. The full text of the SNOPA legislation is available at http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/113/hr537/text. Continue reading

California Background Checks Topic of Presentation at Los Angeles HR Star Conference on March 20

Attorney and safe hiring expert Lester Rosen, Founder and CEO of Employment Screening Resources® (ESR), will discuss ‘Ten Things You Need to Know About California Background Checks in 45 Minutes’ in a presentation at the Los Angeles HR Star Conference on Wednesday, March 20, 2013. The LA HR Star Conference will take place at the Los Angeles Convention Center in Los Angeles, California from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Pacific Time. For more information, visit http://www.hrstarconference.com/la/. Continue reading

Background Checks and Fingerprinting Considered for California State Health Insurance Exchange Workers

California state officials looking to hire 20,000 workers to help individuals enroll in the state health insurance exchange are considering whether these new employees – known as “assisters” – should undergo background checks and fingerprinting, according to a report from the Los Angeles Times available at http://articles.latimes.com/2013/mar/15/business/la-fi-insure-criminal-checks-20130315. Continue reading

New York City Passes Law Prohibiting Hiring Discrimination against Unemployed Job Applicants

The New York City Council has voted to override a veto by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg to enact legislation – Intro 814-A – that prohibits employers from refusing to consider or hire qualified job applicants who are unemployed. The law prevents employers from using employment status in a hiring decision and from posting job ads that require applicants to be currently employed. The Council had originally passed the bill in January 2013 before the Mayor’s veto in February 2013. A press release from the New York City Council about the legislation is available at http://council.nyc.gov/html/pr/012213jobs.shtml. Continue reading

New York Social Security Number Protection Law Amendment Allows Employers to Request SSN for Background Checks

New York law signed by Governor Andrew Cuomo in August 2012 that amended the state’s 2008 Social Security Number Protection Law has caused some concern for New York employers conducting background checks. However, a review of the law demonstrates that when it comes to background checks conducted under the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and state law, the law does not impede an employer’s ability to utilize a Social Security number (SSN). Continue reading

Legislation to Prevent Employers from Requesting Social Media Passwords Introduced or Pending in 28 States

At least 28 states have legislation that has been introduced or is pending in 2013 to prevent employers from requesting usernames and passwords to various social media and personal Internet accounts of employees and job applicants to get or keep a job, according the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL). A list of legislation regarding employer access to social media information as of February 15, 2013 is available on the NCSL website at http://www.ncsl.org/issues-research/telecom/employer-access-to-social-media-passwords-2013.aspx. Continue reading

California Supreme Court Ruling on Discrimination Case Involving Mixed Motive May Impact Fair Employment and Housing Claims

On February 7, 2013, the California Supreme Court issued a unanimous decision in a case – Harris v. City of Santa Monica – that involved the “mixed motive” theory where the employer has both legitimate and discriminatory reasons for job actions such as termination and discipline. The Court ruled an employer can defeat an employee’s claim for damages in a discrimination case by proving with a preponderance of evidence it would have terminated the employee anyway for lawful reasons.  The ruling on Harris v. City of Santa Monica is available at http://www.courts.ca.gov/opinions/documents/S181004A.PDF. Continue reading