New York Labor And Employment Law Report

New York Labor And Employment Law Report

Category Archives: Background Checks

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Albany County Enacts Legislation Prohibiting Inquiries into Criminal Convictions for County Employment

Posted in Background Checks
Following a national trend to “ban the box” on job applications, on February 13, 2017, the Albany County Legislature passed legislation prohibiting Albany County from inquiring about an applicant’s criminal conviction history until after the applicant receives a conditional offer of employment.  The new law, entitled the “Albany County Fair Chance Act,” also requires the… Continue Reading

New York City Human Rights Law Strictly Limits Employers’ Use of Credit Checks in Hiring

Posted in Background Checks
In follow-up to our April 21 post, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio signed into law an amendment to the New York City Human Rights Law on May 6, prohibiting employment discrimination on the basis of “consumer credit history.”  The amendment makes it an “unlawful discriminatory practice” for an employer to use an applicant’s… Continue Reading

Most New York City Employers May Soon Be Prohibited From Conducting Credit Checks on Job Applicants

Posted in Background Checks
On April 16, 2015, the New York City Council overwhelmingly passed an amendment to the New York City Human Rights Law that would bar most city employers from using credit checks as part of their hiring process.  Supporters of the bill argue that in most cases, an applicant’s consumer credit history has no direct correlation… Continue Reading

The Use of Social Media During the Hiring Process: Do the Benefits Outweigh the Risks?

Posted in Background Checks, Employee Privacy
As the social media phenomenon continues to dominate our culture and its use has become second-nature, it is worthwhile to revisit some of the issues presented by an employer’s use of social media, particularly in the context of hiring. Social media presents a unique workplace conundrum.  On one hand, employees generally believe that their use… Continue Reading

Syracuse Common Council Passes “Ban the Box” Ordinance

Posted in Background Checks
On December 8, the Syracuse Common Council voted 8-1 to pass a “Ban the Box” ordinance.  If the ordinance is signed by the Mayor (or if the Mayor’s veto is overridden by the Common Council), the ordinance would prohibit the City of Syracuse and persons or entities that provide goods or services under contract with the City from… Continue Reading

The City of Rochester Adopts a “Ban the Box” Ordinance

Posted in Background Checks
The City of Rochester recently unanimously enacted a “Ban the Box” ordinance, which prohibits employers from asking applicants about criminal convictions at any time before the employer has conducted an initial employment interview or made a conditional offer of employment.  This new ordinance takes effect on November 18, 2014.  It applies to all public and… Continue Reading

Recent Lawsuit Highlights the Importance of Fair Credit Reporting Act Compliance

Posted in Background Checks
As discussed in a previous blog post, the Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”) expressly requires employers to provide applicants with a stand-alone disclosure and authorization form prior to obtaining a background check.  This form must be separate from the employment application, and cannot include any type of language attempting to release the employer from liability associated with… Continue Reading

Federal District Court Scolds EEOC for Meritless Background Check Lawsuit

Posted in Background Checks, Employment Discrimination, Race Discrimination
As previously reported, the elimination of barriers in recruitment and hiring was identified as one of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s six priorities in its 2013-2016 Strategic Enforcement Plan (“SEP”).  Accordingly, the EEOC is focusing its enforcement efforts and resources on eradicating both class-based intentional discrimination, as well as facially-neutral recruitment and hiring practices that… Continue Reading

City of Buffalo Passes “Ban the Box” Legislation

Posted in Background Checks
Recently, the City of Buffalo joined the “Ban the Box” club, enacting an ordinance amending Chapter 154 of the Code of the City of Buffalo to prohibit employers from inquiring about an applicant’s criminal convictions during the application process.  This means that employers are prohibited from including such inquiries on employment applications or asking questions about… Continue Reading

Reminder: New Fair Credit Reporting Act “Summary of Rights” Must Be Used

Posted in Background Checks
Employers who engage third parties to perform background checks on employees or job applicants must provide the employees/applicants with an updated "Summary of Rights" form pursuant to new Fair Credit Reporting Act ("FCRA") requirements, which took effect on January 1, 2013.  The form is available here, at "Appendix K to Part 1022 — Summary of Consumer Rights."… Continue Reading