When conducting background checks on current employees, especially those who are under consideration for promotion, it’s important to keep these things in mind. While it may not be necessary, you may want to inform your employee that you’re going to run a background check on them. Depending on the situation, he or she may appreciate the notice, and it might help you avoid any uncomfortable situations in the future.
- Under federal law in the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), the background authorization document signed by the employee when first hired is valid for the person’s entire tenure of employment. For example, let’s say your employee drives a company vehicle and you checked the status of the driving record before making the job offer. Now the person has been working for a year and you want to re-check the license status. You can do it without getting another document signed. However, some employers prefer to inform the applicant that the check will be done and ask for any disclosure of details that could be revealed. Also, they may choose to provide another disclosure and ask for another authorization to be signed. All of this is based on the employer’s own procedure and, possibly, advice from legal counsel. Please note that if the employee leaves for any reason and is then rehired, the disclosure and authorization process must be redone.
- When the employee is being promoted to a position requiring significant financial responsibility, employers may choose to order an employment credit report (if this is permitted by local law). As mentioned above, the original authorization would still be valid. However, many employers choose speak with the employee and provide a new disclosure form and a new authorization form to sign since the credit bureau will inform the employee that the report has been requested, and this could be an unwelcomed surprise for some people. So, in an effort to avoid any conflicts, employers will typically provide a new disclosure and ask for a new authorization.
- When an employer gets an anonymous tip from a worker or a member of the public that indicates an employee is in trouble with the law, you may decide to check the employee’s criminal record. It could be a coworker who claims to know the person was arrested recently for assault or selling drugs. In such a case, you can simply order the criminal record check. However, some employers may choose to speak with the ‘accused’ employee first before making any determinations, such as ordering the criminal record. Criminal record re-checks for this purpose are typically very sensitive and delicate situations.
LaborClear is LaborChex’s monthly monitoring service that will alert you of an employee or volunteer’s arrest within the United States. Once employees or volunteers are hired, most organizations no longer look into their background. Now, employers and volunteer organizations have a way to continually monitor individuals.
LaborClear is a computerized search of a massive database of over 500 million records. National criminal databases, which are also referred to as multi-jurisdictional databases, can be a key part of the background screening process, helping to catch unsuitable applicants by using a wider pool of information than is readily available for standard criminal history searches.
To learn more about LaborClear, contact us today!