According to a 2020 survey by the Professional Background Screening Association (PBSA) and HR.com, about 94% of employers conducted at least one type of employment background screening. Comprehensive employment background checks are often done to help companies make informed hiring decisions, protect employers from potential risks, and create a safe workplace environment. Unfortunately, mistakes and false information on background checks can cause a person to be denied employment.
If you believe that you have been unfairly treated during the employment screening process, consulting with an experienced Mississippi employment screening attorney is crucial to protect your rights. The Ware Law Firm, PLLC is committed to offering comprehensive legal guidance and strong representation to individuals who have been wrongfully denied employment due to background check errors. Attorney Daniel Ware can evaluate your unique situation, explore your available legal options, and fight diligently to advocate for your rights.
The Ware Law Firm, PLLC proudly serves clients in Magee, Mississippi, and throughout Jefferson Davis, Simpson, Covington, Smith, and Southern Rankin counties.
Types of Employment Screening
Employment screening can be described as due diligence that is conducted to ensure that employers are hiring a person that is the right fit for the job. Employment background checks can help businesses mitigate the risks of bad hires and build a safer and more productive workforce. Below are the common types of employment screening:
- Identity Verification
- Professional License & Education Background Checks
- Credit Background Checks
- Criminal Background Checks
- Fingerprint Background Checks
- MVR Reports
- E-Verify Background Checks
Using the information found in employment background checks, employers can evaluate a prospective applicant’s character, credentials, professional, criminal, and financial history. However, applicant rights must be protected, and any background information obtained must not be used to discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, gender, or disability.
Regulations that Protect Applicant Rights
Under federal, state, and some local laws, prospective employees are protected during the job application and hiring process. Here are some regulations that protect the rights of job applicants:
Fair Credit Reporting Act
The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) is a federal law that regulates and compels credit reporting agencies to protect information gathered and ensure that they only distribute a fair and accurate summary of a consumer’s credit history. Some of the important provisions of the FCRA include:
- The right to access to your credit report
- The right to request a credit score
- The right to protected access to your credit file
- The right to accurate reporting
- The right to seek damages for violations
- The right to have outdated information removed
- The right to limit prescreened credit and insurance offers based on the information of your credit file
- The right to restrict who can look at your credit file
- The right to consent if a current or prospective employer wants to look at your credit report
Ban the Box Laws
A “ban the box” law is a criminal background check law prohibiting employers from requesting the criminal history of a prospective employee on an employment application in some states and localities. About 37 states and more than 150 cities and counties have adopted a Ban-the-Box or “fair chance” policy. Unfortunately, Ban the Box legislation is not in effect in Mississippi.
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is a federal agency that is responsible for enforcing laws that make it illegal to discriminate against an employee or a job applicant on the basis of the person’s race, religion, age (40 or older), color, sex (including pregnancy, sexual orientation, and transgender status), disability, national origin, or genetic information.
Employment Screening Process
Below are the important provisions of the Fair Credit Reporting Act regarding the employment screening process:
- Employers must provide the job applicant with a written disclosure stating their intentions to conduct a background check.
- The job applicant must provide written permission or consent allowing the employer to conduct the employment screening or background check.
- Employers are required to certify legal compliance to the consumer reporting agency.
- Employers must provide pre-adverse action notice – process for rejecting, terminating, or reassigning – to the job applicant.
- Employers must also send a post-adverse notice indicating they took action based on information obtained during the background check.
If an employer violates any of the provisions of the Act, an experienced attorney can help take legal action against the employer to recover damages.
Work With an Experienced Attorney
Unfortunately, errors on background checks are quite common and can keep a person from securing employment. If your background check or employment screening resulted in inaccurate information, you have the right to dispute the false information with the employment reporting agency or background check company. An experienced employment screening attorney can evaluate your unique circumstances and determine the best course of action.
For more than two decades, Attorney Daniel Ware has devoted his career to providing outstanding legal services and assisting victims of employment screening errors. Using his knowledge of the laws addressing employment screening and fair credit reporting, he can fight diligently to protect your applicant rights and help dispute the inaccurate information in your background checks. The firm can help you take additional legal action against the employer or background check company that violated the FCRA.
Employment Screening Attorney Serving Magee, Mississippi
If you were unjustly treated during the employment screening process, contact the Ware Law Firm, PLLC today to schedule a one-on-one case assessment. Attorney Daniel Ware can offer you the experienced legal counsel and brilliant advocacy you need to navigate key decisions. Located in Magee, Mississippi, the firm proudly serves clients throughout Jefferson Davis, Simpson, Covington, Smith, and Southern Rankin counties.