Employee Background & Credit Checks

Employee HandbookEmployers in Michigan and surrounding states conducting background reports on job applicants received a favorable decision from the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals when it comes to limiting liability for claims under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). The decision was issued on February 18, 2016, in the case Rocheleau v. Elder Living Constr., LLC

Criminal background checksMichigan’s Senate Judiciary committee is scheduled to consider a bill tomorrow that would make it easier for individuals previously convicted of certain crimes to have their records expunged.

Specifically, Michigan House Bill 4186 would allow individuals convicted of a single felony or a couple of misdemeanors to apply to have them removed from their record.  

Checklist.jpgJob applications commonly have a question in the form of checking a box to indicate whether an applicant has a criminal record. If the applicant checks “yes,” the applicant is asked to explain the circumstances.

In reality, however, checking the box ends the employment opportunity for the applicant because it is likely that a prospective

Pepsi.jpgOn January 11, 2012, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) reported that Pepsi Beverages agreed to pay $3.13 million and provide job offers and training to resolve a charge of race discrimination. This EEOC charge is a reminder that employers considering or presently using criminal background checks in hiring must tailor the program to meet 

Nuts & Bolts.jpegEmployers, HR professionals, and job applicants generally understand that there are questions that can be asked during the interview process and there are questions that cannot be asked because they violate state and federal employment statutes.

For example, under Michigan law, an employer may not “use a written or oral inquiry or form of application

Credit Reports.jpgConnecticut recently joined five other states that restrict the use of credit report information in employment decisions. These five other states are Maryland, Illinois, Oregon, Washington, and Hawaii. 

Proposed Michigan Legislation 

Michigan does not presently have similar legislation in place. But State Representative Jon M. Switalski is the primary sponsor of House Bill 4362 (PDF)