News & Analysis as of

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

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

New Year: Resolve, Review, Revise

The new year is a time for reflection. With that reflection often comes a resolve for change, from small modifications of some old habits to wholesale new beginnings and everything in between. From a business perspective,...more

Background Checks Headline in 2014

In 2014, background checks were a hot topic in state and local legislatures. Before this year, only 8 jurisdictions in the country had passed laws preventing private employers from asking job candidates about their criminal...more

Watch Your Back: The Growing Threat of FCRA Background Check Class Actions

Class action suits against employers alleging a violation of the Fair Credit Reporting Act when using background checks performed by a credit reporting agency have more than tripled in 2014, with new cases continuing to be...more

Beware of Stock Vendor Background Check Forms

If you are like many employers, you use an online job application or are considering switching to an online process. Online applications have many benefits, and there are numerous vendors prepared to help you set up an online...more

Four New Laws Within 40 Miles: The Washington, DC Area Accelerates the "Ban-the-Box" Movement

The Washington, DC area has become the leading edge of the "ban-the-box" movement, with four new ban-the-box laws applicable to private employers enacted in the past six months. Baltimore, Maryland, started the trend when...more

‘Tis the (Retail) Season, Part II: Conducting Background Checks on Seasonal Workers

During the upcoming holiday season, many companies—especially those with retail operations—will be looking to expand their available workforce by hiring seasonal workers. Unfortunately, many of these temporary workers will be...more

More Focus on Employer Background Checks

The focus on employment background checks is not going away. A few weeks ago I wrote about Dollar General’s $4 million dollar settlement of a class action lawsuit based on alleged violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act...more

Publix to Pay $6.8 Million for Alleged FCRA Violations

Publix Super Markets Inc. has agreed to pay $6.8 million to settle a class-action lawsuit over the supermarket chain’s background check procedures. Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), employers must provide prior...more

Publix to Pay $6.8 Million Settlement over Noncompliant Background Check Forms

If your company’s background check disclosure form includes a release of liability, take it out. Less than a year after a federal district court in Pennsylvania ruled that Closetmaid violated the Fair Credit Reporting...more

When Did You Last Update Your Background Check Materials? Maybe It’s Time.

Dollar General just agreed to pay $4 million to settle a class action background check case based on its alleged violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). Marcum v. Dolgencorp, Inc., Civil Action No. 3:12cv108...more

FINRA Proposes Rule Strengthening Background Checks

Last month, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issued a proposed rule requiring member firms to strengthen their background investigations of applicants seeking registration. The proposed rule adopts,...more

FCRA Preempts Tortious Interference Claim, Says NJ Court

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)—a federal law that regulates the collection and use of “consumer information”—covers employers who solicit third-party vendors known as consumer reporting agencies (CRAs) to run background...more

Gavel to Gavel: A tiger by the tail

Back in school, I recall reading the short story The Lady or the Tiger? It’s about a woman made to choose between two fates for her would-be husband, neither of which was particularly pleasant. What she would choose is left...more

Thumbs Up/ Thumbs Down, Still FCRA

Does your business use a contractor to provide in-home services to your customers? If so, you probably want the contractor to conduct background checks on its employees. You want the contractor to screen out people who pose...more

Retailers Facing New Class Action Attack for Routine (but Unlawful) Background Check Practices

Retail employers are under attack by a wave of recent class action lawsuits alleging violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), as well as related state counterpart laws – such as the California Consumer Credit...more

Employers Should Assess Background Checking Procedures to Avoid Running Afoul of the Fair Credit Reporting Act

There has been a recent uptick in class action litigation initiated by job applicants claiming that employers violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act (the FCRA) in the manner they procured and used consumer reports about the...more

The Swelling Tide of Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) Class Actions: Practical Risk-Mitigating Measures for Employers

In This Issue: - Summary Of FCRA Obligations On Employers That Use Consumer Reports - Potential Liability For FCRA Non-Compliance - The Swelling Tide Of Class Action Filings - Mitigating Measures -...more

Background Checks: Back to Basics

Recently two federal agencies, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC), issued joint guidance on job applicant and employee background checks and "What Employers Need to Know."...more

Employee Background Checks

In follow-up to our prior post regarding certain additional liability protections afforded to employers who conduct background checks, in this post we explore additional considerations employers should keep in mind when...more

Rogue CFO III – Background Checks

Perform Background Checks. It seems obvious. Why would a company not want as much information about a candidate for its CFO position that it can legally obtain? But this oversight is common. Too many smaller companies hire...more

Employment Background Checks: Tips Employers Should Know to Comply With Federal Laws

Many employers rely on background checks to screen job applicants and employees when making important personnel decisions, including hiring, retention, and promotion. In March, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission...more

Social Media - The Double-Edged Sword For Screening Job Applicants

It’s become second-nature to “Google” people to whom you’ve been introduced or are planning to meet. For many employers, it’s just as easy to engage in the same process with those applying for employment. When an...more

Dig Up the Dirt, but Know the Rules of the Game - The Fair Credit Reporting Act and Background Checks

Employers like to know everything they can about applicants. Hiring employees is a big investment, and they want to do their due diligence up front so that their investment pays off. But before employers hire third-party...more

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