Michigan Delays Date of Birth (DOB) Redaction in Criminal Records Until 2022

Background Screening News

Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn

On June 30, 2021, the Michigan Supreme Court issued orders to delay the implementation of ADM File No. 2017-28 and ADM File No. 2020-26 that would redact the Date of Birth (DOB) in the criminal records of job applicants during background checks. The implementation date has been changed from July 1, 2021, to January 1, 2022.

The extension of the effective date of the orders amending MCR 1.109 and MCR 8.119 of the Michigan Court Rules (MCR) until 2022 “is intended to allow for additional programming changes and other changes required by trial courts and court users to implement the rule changes,” according to a “Staff Comment” on both orders.

Michigan courts had planned to redact DOB from their public records available through courthouses as a result of Michigan’s ADM File No. 2017-28 and ADM File No. 2020-26 adopted by the Supreme Court that the State Court Administrative Office had interpreted to require clerks not to use or provide DOB in searches.

The Professional Background Screening Association (PBSA) – a non-profit trade organization representing firms performing background checks worldwide – had issued a call to action to members about the DOB redaction since access to DOBs is needed to confirm a record as a match to a job candidate during a background check.

The PBSA asked members with clients in Michigan or who completed background checks on individuals who live or have lived in Michigan to contact the Michigan Supreme Court to express their concerns with the rule using a sample letter and contact list provided by the PBSA, and to also ask their Michigan customers to write a letter.

The PBSA sent a letter to the Michigan Supreme Court to explain how DOB redaction would affect background checks: “If implemented, this rule will likely cause a halt in hiring and rental housing placements in Michigan. It is not merely inconvenient; it is set to upend all rental housing and employment decisions in Michigan.”

The letter continued: “Background checks are a critical component of the employment and rental process. Employers, property managers, and consumers alike depend on our members to search public records to determine whether a particular record belongs to a candidate being considered for employment or housing.”

The PBSA represents the interest of more than 880 member companies that offer employment and tenant background screening services, advances excellence in the screening profession, and is the trusted global authority for the background screening profession. To learn more about the PBSA, visit https://thepbsa.org/.

The PBSA will continue to strengthen the professionalism of background screeners in the United States, according to leading global background check firm Employment Screening Resources® (ESR), which compiled the “ESR Top Ten Background Check Trends” for 2021 featuring emerging and influential trends in the industry.

ESR founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Attorney Lester Rosen was chair of the committee that founded the PBSA in 2003 when it was known as the National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS) before rebranding to a new name in 2019. That year, Rosen received the PBSA Lifetime Achievement Award.

Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – a founding member of the PBSA that was ranked the number one screening firm by HRO Today in 2020 – is accredited by the PBSA by successfully completing the Background Screening Agency Accreditation Program (BSAAP). To learn more about ESR, visit www.esrcheck.com.

NOTE: Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) does not provide or offer legal services or legal advice of any kind or nature. Any information on this website is for educational purposes only.

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