Some employers check their background before deciding whether to hire you or keep you in your job. When employers do a background check, you have rights established by federal law. Depending on where you live, the laws of your city or state of residence may offer other protections. If you believe that an employer has violated the law applicable to background checks, it is important that you know who you need to contact. Consult with someone who knows the laws in force in your place of residence.
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Questions about your background
An employer can ask for all kinds of information about your background, especially during the hiring process. For example, some employers may ask questions about their work history, studies, criminal records, financial history, medical history, or their use of social media on the Internet.
When an employer asks for information about your background, you should treat it like any other person, regardless of race, national origin, color, sex, religion, disability, genetic information (including your family medical history), or your age, if he is over 40 years old. An employer can not ask for additional information about your background because you are, for example, of a certain race or ethnicity.
Use of background reports
Some employers try to find out your background by hiring someone to make a “background report” about you. Among the most common are criminal background reports and credit reports. But when an employer gets a background report prepared by a company that deals with collecting and collecting background information, special rules apply.
- Before getting the report, the employer must tell you that you could use the information to make a decision related to your employment, and you should ask for your written authorization. You are not required to give your authorization, but if you are applying for a job and do not give your authorization for the background check, the employer can reject your application. If an employer obtains a background report about you without your authorization, contact the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
- If the employer thinks that he or she may not hire you, or refuse to keep you at your job or promote you due to any information in the report, you must provide a copy of the report and a ” Summary of your rights ” indicating how to establish Contact with the company that provided the report. This is because the reports sometimes contain errors. If you find an error in your background report, ask the company that issued the report to correct it and send the employer a copy of the corrected report. Also, tell the employer that there is an error.
If the employer finds any negative data in his background
If your background report contains any negative data, prepare your explanation – and the reason why that information should not affect your ability to do the job. Below is a description of your rights depending on the type of negative information the employer finds:
Criminal records or other public records
If you do not get a job or promotion due to information in your criminal record or other public records, the employer must verbally communicate or send you in writing or electronically the following:
- The name, address and telephone number of the company that provided the criminal record report or public record report.
- A statement stating that the company that provided the information did not make the decision to take the adverse action and that it can not inform you of the specific reasons for the action.
- A notice informing you that you have the right to dispute the accuracy and completeness of all data in the report, you also have the right to receive an additional free report from the company that provided it, if you request it within 60 days after the date on which the employer made the decision not to hire him or not keep him in his job.
Credit report / Financial information
If an employer decides not to hire you, or refuses to keep you at your job or to promote you due to the financial information contained in a background report, you must communicate it verbally, in writing or electronically. Specifically, the employer must:
- Inform the name, address and telephone number of the company that provided the credit report or background information.
- Deliver a statement stating that the company that provided the information did not make the decision to take the adverse action and that it can not inform you of the specific reasons for the action.
- Give you a notice informing you that you have the right to dispute the accuracy or completeness of all information in your report and to receive an additional free report from the company that provided the employer with the credit report or background information if you request it within a period of 60 days.
Race, national origin, color, sex, religion, disability, genetic information, age
Sometimes it is illegal for an employer not to hire you or refuse to keep you in your job because of your background information, but sometimes it is not. For example, it is considered illegal when the employer establishes different background requirements depending on their race, national origin, color, sex, religion, disability, genetic information (including family medical history) or their age if they are over 40 years old. It is also illegal for an employer to reject job applicants with criminal records of an ethnic group but not to reject other job seekers with the same criminal record.