Background Checks Do’s and Don’t’s

I thought I’ll share this interesting article by Stephanie Rabiner.

Enjoy the post, John

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Background checks are an important hiring tool, helping you net the best applicant and fend off any future lawsuits.

They, however, come with a few legal constraints of their own, and are subject to privacy rules, disclosure requirements, and federal discrimination laws.

To help you navigate the world of background checks, here are our top “do’s” and “don’ts.”

Do get consent. Besides the fact some records, like credit checks and transcripts, require prior written consent, it’s always a good idea to have an applicant sign off on all facets of a background check to ease liability.

Do be reasonable. Privacy laws limit just how deep of a background check you may conduct. Only look into records that are related to an employee’s performance, or are business-related. If they can’t be tied to the job’s qualifications, chances are the records are unreasonable.

Do ask questions. This applies not only to references, but to applicants as well. There may be something missing, or a piece of information in the background check that makes you uneasy. Instead of dismissing the applicant outright, ask–you may be surprised.

Don’t discriminate. If you’re going to require a background check of one applicant, you have to do it for all. Also be sure not to run afoul of discrimination law in the questions you ask or the information you seek.

Don’t break the law. Or, alternatively, do know the law. The ways in which you may use a criminal background check or credit report are limited by law. So read up on the Fair Credit Reporting Act and any state law that limits how employers may use criminal records. Every state regulates this issue.

Related Resources:

Interviews and the Hiring Process (FindLaw)

Criminal Background Checks In Hiring Decisions (FindLaw)

Can I be Sued Over an Employee’s Criminal Record? (FindLaw’s Free Enterprise)

Supreme Court to Hear NASA Background Check Case (FindLaw’s Law & Daily Life)

Read more…via Background Checks Do’s and Don’t’s – Free Enterprise.

About Kelly Business Advisors, LLC

Early in his career John started-up and sold 7 years later a Moving and Storage Company in Milwaukee. He acquired and was President of Kelly Pickle Company f/k/a Bond Pickle Company, in Oconto, WI for 12 years. Built a monthly round-table networking group of manufactures in Oconto. Developed marketing plans, sales plans, products and implemented lean manufacturing practices with many North American companies. Worked with non-profits as both a front line leader and behind the scenes. He is active in his church, a member of the Green Bay Chamber of Commerce,Business Networkers International (BNI) and now is joining the Green Bay Downtown Rotary.

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