Our experience and investigations have revealed that employers routinely have background checks or consumer reports completed on applicants or current employees. Often these employers are in violation of the law.
Our clients have expressed feelings of shock, hurt, anger and vulnerability when they learn that their employer or potential employer has had a background check or consumer report pulled on their behalf. Often employees are not properly notified in advance of the report being pulled, or only learn of the report when their employer notifies them that they are withdrawing an offer of employment, or taking adverse action against them because of the results of that background check or consumer report.
If you think a background check or consumer report has been pulled on your behalf, your employer may have failed to comply with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (also known as FCRA) and you may be entitled to compensation. The FCRA protects employees or applicants when employers or potential employers use a third party to conduct a background or credit check.
We understand that most people are not fully aware of their rights under the FCRA. If you contact our offices, we will take the time to clearly and honestly explain your rights, discuss the options you may have available, and guide you through any appropriate legal action.
Employer Obligations Under the FCRA
Employers have several obligations when conducting a background check or credit check on potential employees. These include:
- Using the information for employment purposes only;
- Disclosing that a background check will be completed and obtaining proper written consent from the applicant or employee prior to conducting the check;
- Informing the employee or applicant if adverse action is taken based on a background or credit check;
- Providing the right to dispute incomplete or inaccurate information on the background check; and
- Not including outdated negative information.
Employers who do not comply with their obligations under the FCRA are subject to penalties and other damages which can be recovered by job applicants and employees affected by the background check.
Confidential Case Evaluations by Experienced Lawyers
For more information on your rights and whether you may have a valid legal claim, contact Thomas & Solomon LLP. Located in the Rochester, New York area, we represent clients across the United States and our attorneys have decades of experience protecting the rights of applicants and employees. Call us at 585-272-0540 or our toll free number 1-877-272-4066, or use our online contact form.