Compliance News Flash - May 2020 #1

Arnall Golden Gregory LLP

Arnall Golden Gregory LLP is pleased to provide you with the Compliance News Flash, which includes current news briefs relevant to background screening, immigration and data privacy, for the benefit and interest of our clients as well as employers and consumer reporting agencies generally.

  • At the request of the Senate Appropriations Committee, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) submitted a report to Congress updating lawmakers on its efforts to educate consumers about their rights to dispute and correct errors in their credit reports. According to the report, the two main ways the FTC promotes credit report accuracy are education and enforcement. The FTC educates consumers and businesses by posting various resources online. On the enforcement side, the report states, the FTC has brought more than 30 actions in the last decade enforcing the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) against consumer reporting agencies, users, and furnishers. Approximately half of those cases involved allegations related to processes for handling consumer disputes of inaccurate information or procedures for ensuring the accuracy of information in consumer reports. Click here to access the FTC report.
  • A new ballot initiative in California, the California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA), would amend and expand the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). The CPRA, sometimes referred to as “CCPA 2.0,” is sponsored by Californians for Consumer Privacy, the same activist group behind the original ballot initiative that led to the CCPA. The CPRA has secured over 900,000 signatures qualifying it for inclusion on the November 2020 ballot in California. The CPRA would establish a new category of “sensitive personal information;” expand data breach liability to include the compromise of a consumer’s email address in combination with a password or security question and answer; grant consumers a right to request correction of inaccurate personal information held by businesses; strengthen the opt-in requirement; increase the penalty for the sale or sharing of children’s data; and establish the California Privacy Protection Agency to handle enforcement instead of the California Attorney General’s Office. If it passes, the million dollar question is—will this override the CCPA. That’s an open question. Click here to read more.
  • Four Republican Senators have announced a plan to introduce a federal bill entitled COVID-19 Consumer Data Protection Act. The bill would apply to “personal health, geolocation, [and] proximity information [collected] for purposes of tracking the spread of COVID-19.” The bill would establish clear definitions of aggregate and de-identified data to ensure companies adopt technical and legal safeguards to protect consumer data from being re-identified; require companies to allow individuals to opt out of the collection, processing, and transfer of their information; direct companies to provide transparency reports to the public describing their data collection activities related to COVID-19; establish data minimization, data security, and data retention requirements; and give enforcement authority to state attorneys general and the FTC. Click here to read the Senators’ press release.
  • United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has published an updated M-274, Handbook for Employers: Guidance for Completing Form I-9. Changes to the Handbook include revised guidance on how to enter expiration date changes based on the automatic extension of Employment Authorization Documents, revised guidance regarding cap-gap extension documentation, new guidance for state employment agencies and employers of individuals referred by state employment agencies, and revised guidance regarding Form I-9 retention. Click here to access the revised Handbook.
  • Suffolk County, NY, St. Louis, MO, and Waterloo, IA are the three most recent localities to enact Ban-the-Box laws. These laws restrict private employers’ ability to inquire into a job applicant’s criminal history. Suffolk County and St. Louis prohibit such inquiries until after an initial interview, while Waterloo prohibits such inquiries until after a conditional offer of employment has been made. St. Louis’ law will take effect on July 1, 2020, Suffolk County’s law will take effect August 25, 2020, and Waterloo’s law will take effect January 1, 2021. Click here for St. Louis, here for Suffolk County, and here for Waterloo.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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