How Much Information?

On October 7th, 2011, posted in: Accounting, Training by 0 Comment

Employers that are hiring want to make good employment decisions. Employers are free to gather job-related information about candidate skills, experience, job history, training and education. However, employers should be cautious when seeking information that is not clearly job-related or that is obtained through a Consumer Reporting Agency (CRA).

Employers should consider carefully whether they need background, criminal or credit-related information about candidates. If yes, provisions of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) will apply if information is provided by a CRA:

  • Before requesting information, the employer must advise candidates that this will done, and have a separate release form signed, giving permission
  • After receiving information, if the employer decides not to hire the candidate, he must provide the candidate with a “pre-adverse action notice,” a copy of the report and a copy of “A Summary of Your Rights Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act.”
  • After taking adverse action, the employer must notify the candidate in an “Adverse Action Notice” that the action has been taken, including identity and contact information for the CRA; a statement that the CRA did not make the decisions and cannot give specific reasons for it; notice of the individual’s right to dispute accuracy or completeness of the information furnished, and the right to another free copy of the report within 60 days.

Individuals can sue an employer in federal court for punitive damages, court costs, and legal fees for non-compliance. For information, go to

Guest post by Ginny McMinn
McMinn Business Solutions

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