Title VII Criminal Background Checks

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act is a United States federal law enacted in 1964 and aimed at preventing discrimination in the workplace on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, and religion. Title VII... more +
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act is a United States federal law enacted in 1964 and aimed at preventing discrimination in the workplace on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, and religion. Title VII has been subsequently extended to discrimination on the basis of pregnancy and sexual stereotypes and to prohibit sexual harassment. Title VII applies to all employers with fifteen or more employees including private employers, state and local governments, and educational institutions.  less -
News & Analysis as of

Using Criminal Convictions in the Hire Process: A Hobson's Choice for Employers?

Is the government really telling employers that they are not allowed to disqualify an applicant because of past criminal activity? In a word, yes. That is increasingly becoming the case on the state level and has been the...more

Are You Keeping the Records Related to Your Company’s Selection Procedures? The EEOC is Watching...

Is your company aware that federal regulations require that employers retain certain personnel and employment records related to its selection procedures? A recent lawsuit by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)...more

Oregon’s New “Ban the Box” Law Prohibits Criminal History Questions on Employment Applications

It’s been an active legislative session in Oregon this year regarding laws affecting the state’s employers. Hot on the heels of enacting laws relating to paid sick leave, noncompete agreements, and employee privacy on social...more

Top 10 Bad Questions to Avoid When Interviewing a Job Applicant

When interviewing job applicants, there are good questions and bad questions. A good question seeks relevant and helpful information about the person applying for the job and about the applicant’s job qualifications...more

Big Data & Employer Recordkeeping Requirements

Last week, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission sued a janitorial and facilities management company for its failure to keep adequate recruitment records. The EEOC alleges that the company used “criminal history...more

EEOC Uses its Record Keeping Requirements to Police Use of Criminal Background Checks

We don't think about personnel files – we just have them. Everything from employment applications to benefits enrollment forms to discipline and discharge documents goes into those files. But did you know that the EEOC...more

Employment Law Newsletter - July 2015

In This Issue: - Employer Risks in Using Employment-Related Criminal Background Checks - DOL Releases Proposed Amendments to FLSA Overtime Regulations: Now is the Time to Reassess Compliance and Update Your...more

Employer Risks in Using Employment-Related Criminal Background Checks

Use of employment-related background checks by employers to discover information about the work history, education, criminal record and financial history of job applicants has become ubiquitous. In one recent survey of...more

Background Screening Companies May Now Report Convictions Older Than Seven Years in Nevada

Under the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), background screening companies (or consumer reporting agencies) are generally prohibited from reporting certain types of derogatory information that the FCRA considers to be...more

Five EEOC Initiatives to Monitor on the Agency’s Silver Anniversary

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) opened its doors on July 2, 1965, exactly one year after President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title VII of that act (“Title VII”) prohibits...more

Federal Court Limits Employer's Right to Discover Information About the EEOC’s Own Hiring Policies and Expands the EEOC's Rights...

In recent years, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has aggressively sought to enforce its April 2012 enforcement guidance concerning how, in the EEOC’s view, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 restricts an...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

2014 Employment and Labor Law Final Exam Answer Key

Thank you to everyone who participated in this year’s Employment and Labor Law Final Exam. We hope the exam was challenging and informative. Congratulations to Margi Fleming and Danisha Sheppard. Both Margi and Danisha will...more

EEOC amps up attack on background checks

On April 25, 2012, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued its Enforcement Guidance on the Consideration of Arrest and Conviction Records in Employment Decisions Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of...more

New Baltimore City Law Limits Employee Criminal Record Checks: How Health Care Employers Are Affected

Effective August 13, 2014, certain Baltimore City employers will be restricted from asking applicants and employees about their criminal history. However, many health care employers will be exempt from this new law either...more

U.S. Census Bureau Down for the Count after Certification Ruling in Criminal Background Check Case

Last Tuesday, a Magistrate Judge in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York granted partial class certification in a case where plaintiffs allege that the United States Census Bureau used arrest...more

50 For 50: Five Decades Of The Most Important Employment Discrimination Decisions - Number 49: EEOC Takes On Background Checks

Throughout this series, we have touched on facially neutral policies which, although not motivated by unlawful discrimination, have a discriminatory effect on certain protected classes. For over 40 years, the courts have...more

Sixth Circuit Upholds Dismissal of EEOC Suit Against Employer Screening Applicants Based on Credit History Information

In April 2012, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued its updated enforcement guidance concerning how, in its view, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII) restricts an employer’s discretion...more

EEOC Provides Clarification on Use of Criminal History Information in Hiring Decisions

What are the requirements for employers that use criminal history information in making employment decisions? Are employers required to take on the onerous task of individually assessing applicants to ensure that they do not...more

Top New Jersey Legal Developments - January 2014

2013 was a busy year for employment law in New Jersey. This newsletter summarizes noteworthy developments in ten key areas—social media, the Law Against Discrimination ("LAD"), whistleblowing, background checks, drug and...more

Banning the Box From Your Employment Application

As the New Year approaches, you are expecting better economic times ahead and a more profitable year for your business. Jumpstarting your entrepreneurial endeavors by hiring more help seems like the way to go, so you place...more

Hiring And Retaining Individuals With Criminal Histories

According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, taking employment action based on an individual’s criminal history can amount to discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII),...more

Wanted: Applicants With A Criminal History And An Unprofessional Hairstyle

A combination of recent enforcement efforts by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and state-level legislators has employers scratching their heads about what they can and cannot consider when making hiring...more

Texas Files Suit to Strike Down EEOC Background Check Guidance

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) usually forces employers who are subject to Title VII to play defense. The State of Texas, however, has upended that approach. On November 4, 2013, Texas filed a federal...more

EEOC Strikes Out In Criminal Background And Credit Check Litigation

The EEOC has been aggressively pursuing litigation against private businesses for alleged violations of Title VII based upon the use of criminal background and credit checks in the hiring process. The theory pursued by the...more

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