EEOC Logo and FTC LogoIf you are an employer who purchases background checks for employment purposes, then a new Technical Assistance Document (TAD) issued on March 10, 2014, is a must-read for you. 

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) joined together to issue informal guidance regarding the legal pitfalls employers face when making personnel decisions – including hiring, retention, promotion and reassignment – based on background checks.  The TAD geared toward employers is entitled “Background Checks: What Employers Need to Know.”  Also issued was a corresponding TAD for employees called “Background Checks: What Job Applicants and Employees Should Know.”

In addition to addressing the anti-discrimination aspect of an employer’s use of background checks, the TADs also focus on the requirement that employers comply with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) when using a third party to perform background checks.  Many employers do not realize that these FCRA requirements apply not only to credit checks, but also to criminal background checks.

Obtaining criminal background checks without the required notice and authorization can lead to costly lawsuits for employers.  If you have questions regarding the use of background checks and whether the FCRA applies to you, please contact labor and employment law attorney Carrie Roelle at (812) 423-3183 or, or contact any member of the KDDK Labor and Employment Law Practice Team.

Links to Technical Assistance Documents:

About the Author

Carrie Roelle

Carrie Roelle, an attorney at Kahn, Dees, Donovan & Kahn, LLP, in Evansville, Indiana, is a member of the KDDK Labor and Employment Law Practice Team and the Litigation and Trial Services Practice Team. Carrie defends employers before state and federal courts, as well as various administrative agencies, in matters involving allegations of discrimination, harassment, interference, and retaliation. In addition to litigation, she participates in counseling employers on employment issues they face each day, including wage and hour compliance, disability issues, workplace policies, and litigation avoidance.

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