Criminal Background Checks

News & Analysis as of

The New Jersey “Opportunity To Compete Act” Takes Effect On March 1, 2015 Restricting Employers From Inquiring Into Job...

On March 1, 2015, New Jersey’s “Opportunity to Compete Act” (“OTCA”) takes effect. As explained in the legislative findings section of the OTCA, it is the intent of the OTCA to remove obstacles impeding employment...more

Fourth Circuit Slaps EEOC for Use of Misleading, Incomplete and Error-Riddled Expert Testimony

Several years ago, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission set discriminatory use of criminal and financial background checks as a top enforcement priority. These cases are brought under the disparate impact theory,...more

Reminder for New Jersey Employers: Statewide 'Ban the Box' Law Takes Effect March 1

As previously reported, New Jersey’s version of the “ban the box” law, entitled “Opportunity to Compete Act” (the Act), goes into effect March 1, 2015. The Act limits covered employers’ ability to inquire into a job...more

“Ban-the-Box” Legislation Limits Inquiries About Criminal Background Checks

A growing number of state and local jurisdictions are enacting “ban-the-box” legislation that limits an employer’s ability to ask about criminal convictions on employment applications. Some jurisdictions are imposing stiff...more

Tampa Council Says No to “Ban the Box” Law for City Contractors, Seeks Alternative Legislation

Last Thursday, Tampa’s City Council declined to pass a law that would have “banned the box” for city contractors. “Ban the box” refers to a movement at the state and local levels of government to remove the check box from job...more

Federal Appellate Court Throws Out EEOC Discrimination Complaint After Expert Accused of “Cherry-Picking” Data

Last week, the Federal Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit upheld a district court’s decision granting summary judgment to an employer accused by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) of racial bias in its...more

EEOC Loses Another Background Check Case

The EEOC has taken a lot of heat on its controversial stance of aggressively litigating adverse impact cases involving background checks.  In April, 2012, the EEOC issued a new enforcement guidance seeking to curtail the uses...more

Update on Criminal Background Checks: Impact of EEOC v. Freeman and Ongoing Challenges in a Continuously Changing Legal...

The latest chapter in the ongoing saga of employment-related criminal background checks in the United States has been written, and one of the authors had some particularly strong words for the Equal Employment Opportunity...more

Fourth Circuit Affirms Summary Judgment against EEOC in Background Check Suit

Last week, in Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) v. Freeman, No. 13-2365 (4th Cir. Feb. 20, 2105), the Fourth Circuit affirmed the award of summary judgment against the EEOC in its suit alleging that the...more

South Carolina Lowers Criminal Background Fees for Control Persons

The South Carolina Board of Financial Institutions has decreased the fees required for a criminal background check for control persons. Effective February 2, 2015, South Carolina Law Enforcement Division and FBI background...more

New Jersey Set to “Ban the Box” Beginning on March 1, 2015

On March 1, 2015, New Jersey will become the latest state to “ban the box” by prohibiting employers from inquiring into a job applicant’s criminal background during the initial stages of the hiring process....more

Also In the News - Data, Privacy, & Security Practice Report - February 2015

OMB Receives Final Rule Permitting Disclosure To NICS --According to reginfo.gov, the White House Office of Management and Budget received a final rule from HHS that would modify the HIPAA Privacy Rule to expressly permit...more

Two new DC laws on wage theft, criminal record info mean a sea change for District employers

In the rush of the holiday season, activity by federal lawmakers might have gone unnoticed. In the dawn of 2015, however, Washington, DC employers have woken to a series of new obligations and restrictions....more

New Jersey's "Ban the Box" Law: FAQs for Employers

The New Jersey Opportunity to Compete Act, better known as “Ban the Box,” will go into effect in less than a month, making this a great time for employers to review their employment applications and hiring procedures to...more

"'Ban the Box' Initiatives: Removing Conviction Histories From Employment Applications"

The use of criminal records in the hiring process has received a great deal of attention in recent years. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued guidance in 2012 requiring employers to demonstrate that conviction...more

2015 Labor and Employment Law Checklist

Each year, LP’s Labor & Employment Practice Group is pleased to provide a short checklist of steps that all companies should consider taking to measure their readiness for the coming year. We hope that you find this 2015...more

Trouble in the Magic Kingdom: Disney Finds Itself the Villain in This Fairytale

Disney is known for its fairytales and happy endings. Usually its adorable characters and feel-good plots earn it wide acclaim. But recently, a California judge agreed with the plaintiff, in Roger L. Culberson II v. The Walt...more

New York Trial Court Provides Guidance on Application of Corrections Law Factors

It should come as no surprise to New York employers that making an employment decision based on an applicant or employee's criminal background can be unlawful. See N.Y. Corr. Law § 752; see also N.Y. Exec. Law § 296 (15).  ...more

California’s Fair Chance Employment Act Targets Construction Contractors

A new California law took effect January 1 that requires employers making bids on state contracts involving “onsite construction-related services” to certify they have “banned the box” on applications for onsite...more

Plaintiffs' Class Action Claims Target Background Checks

Earlier this week, the arts and crafts retailer Michael’s Stores, Inc. received notice of a new class action lawsuit challenging its use of applicant background checks. The lawsuit alleges that the retailer failed to provide...more

Illinois and Chicago “Ban the Box” Laws Take Effect

Illinois’ and Chicago’s “ban the box” laws took effect on January 1. Both laws prohibit private employers from making criminal inquiries until after an applicant has been notified of his or her selection for an interview...more

South Carolina Announces Increased Criminal Background Check Fees

The South Carolina Board of Financial Institutions has increased the fees required for a criminal background check for mortgage loan officers (MLOs) and control persons. Note that the South Carolina criminal background check...more

City of Chicago Expands “Ban the Box” Law to Smaller Employers and City Agencies

Effective January 1, 2015, the City of Chicago expanded the coverage of Illinois’s “ban the box” law within city limits. The amended Human Rights Ordinance, Section 2-160-010 of the Municipal Code of Chicago, effectively...more

15 For ’15: Employment And Labor Resolutions For The New Year

While the year is still young, here are 15 New Year’s resolutions that employers may want to make: 1. Make sure your “independent contractors” are really independent contractors. ”Independent contractors” are under...more

New Minnesota Expungement Law Helps Protect Employers from Liability

A new Minnesota law that took effect on January 1 expands the opportunities for ex-offenders to expunge their criminal records. In an effort to protect employers who hire employees with expunged records, the new law provides...more

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