Few companies are able to keep up with every little fact that appears in the news. For business owners, though, staying abreast of new and changing laws and regulations is a key factor in mitigating company risk that said, if your company frequently runs background checks on prospective employees, we have called out some of the new, emerging topics to keep on your radar.
Ban-The-Box initiatives – A nationwide movement
For many years, almost all businesses required a background check in the early hiring phase. If applicants were unwilling to submit to screening, or their check turned up some negative information, their application would never be considered. Since recent data indicates that such policies result in discrimination, there has been a nationwide movement to ban the box on employment applications which inquires into an applicant’s criminal history and to also prohibit background checks until after a conditional offer of employment has been made. In fact, over 200 million Americans live in jurisdictions with some sort of “ban the box” legislation. As such, businesses would be wise to make sure that their job applications do not require their candidates to reveal this type of sensitive information and to review any Ban The Box or related Fair Chance Ordinance in areas where they do business
Remember that any information collected during a background check is private; in fact, you could even view such information as the personal property of the applicant. Even if you receive permission to collect personal information, the candidate has the right to know how the information was used, and should even be allowed to access and review their results. Never hide data from an applicant; if the screening revealed something that affects their chance of employment, you should readily disclose it to the candidate.
Data from background checks should only be shared with those who are involved in the hiring process. If you are forced to reject a candidate based on criminal history, for example, you should never reveal this fact to your staff, as such violations of privacy could result in hefty penalties.
Know your jurisdiction – How state and county lines affect compliance
As we mentioned before, millions of Americans live in areas that have passed ban the box regulations. Some of these regulations exist at a municipal level, others at a statewide level, and sometimes even both, all imposing some sort of restrictions on background checks. Often times, the state and local rules conflict with one another. Therefore, managers must keep up to date with federal, state, and local regulations simultaneously, especially larger businesses operating in multiple locations.
At Chane Solutions, we believe that the safest way to guarantee compliance with these complex legal issues is to enlist the help of expert counsel. Our screening professionals have the professional insight and expertise needed to guarantee that your business will receive high-quality, accurate background screening results without jeopardizing your legal standing. Contact us today to learn more about our comprehensive services.