Legal Issues That Employers Need To Know About Background Checks

For companies large and small, a pivotal part of the hiring process is running a background check on job applicants. This can be a treacherous situation if not done correctly. In this two part series, we want to lead you through several legal issues that all employers should know about background checks.

The first issue is disclosures. Before you run a background check, you must give a candidate a written notice stating that you are going to run a background check. The disclosure must be contained in a separate “stand alone” document and cannot be part of a job application form. And in certain states, the disclosure must also inform the applicant that they have the right to receive a copy of the report. Even jobs that are posted online and allow applicants to apply online must abide by this policy. There are legal ramifications for not doing so.

The second legality to note is that an employer must have an applicant’s authorization to run a background check. This means that the applicant’s signature must be on file before the background check is run.

And the last issue we are covering concerns the release of medical information. Employers must have an applicant’s or current employee’s consent to obtain medical information. According to the Fair Credit Reporting Act, it is illegal for third-party vendors to release background check records that contain a person’s medical information such as medical conditions and prescriptions for employment or credit decisions. However, a person may give consent for the release of medical information if the medical information is relevant to the job

If you are hiring new employees or just need to run a criminal background check, let us help. Integrascan has conducted criminal background checks for thousands of employers. Detailed, reliable and cost effective we are Integrascan, the industry leader in criminal background checks.


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