Course Details

Background Checks In California: Best Practices For Hiring In The Golden State

About This Course:
When it comes to hiring new employees, it makes sense that many organizations conduct background checks as a matter of course. But there are legal limits to what employers can and cannot obtain when performing background checks for prospective employees.

In California, employees have even greater rights regarding background checks. In addition to being covered by the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), many are also covered under the California Investigative Consumer Reporting Agencies Act (ICRA). California employers also have to be aware of regulations within the California Labor Code and the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), as well as new “ban the box” laws that prohibit employer discrimination based on criminal conviction.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has set specific guidelines for background check compliance, making it essential for employers to maintain background check policies that are consistent with business necessity and take precautions to avoid these missteps.

Join us for answers to critical questions on how to legally conduct employee background checks in California. Our presenter, a skilled California employment attorney, will provide a roadmap for navigating the rules in California and staying compliant with federal guidelines as well to avoid costly lawsuits related to background check screening processes.

Learning Objectives
  • The importance of getting permission when a background check is being conducted and why
  • FCRA and EEOC rules to abide by concerning employee background checks
  • How to ensure compliance with ICRA, FEHA, Fair Chance laws, and other California regulations
  • Whether you have to explain if you decide against hiring someone because of a criminal record,and why
  • How many years back you can go when doing background checks
  • Whether you use social media, such as Facebook, when checking a prospective employee’s background
  • How to establish background check policies that link the decision-making to job descriptions
  • How to avoid “red flag” issues that could result in disparate treatment and disparate impact
  • The importance of individualized assessments to avoid discrimination claims
  • Whether you can ask prospective employees if they have a felony record without the assurance that it won’t necessarily exclude them from being hired
  • And much more!
About Your Presenter

Mary L. Topliff, Esq.
Law Offices of Mary L. Topliff

Mary L. Topliff has specialized in employment law counseling, training, and compliance for over 20 years. Ms. Topliff regularly advises business owners and human resources professionals on all aspects of workplace issues with the goal of preventing costly disputes. She regularly conducts workplace investigations and provides mediation and post-investigation consulting services. Ms. Topliff also negotiates employment and separation agreements for executives. Ms. Topliff is a frequent speaker and author on practical applications of workplace legal issues. She publishes the Workplace Wave, with articles on recent legal and legislative developments, and serves on the Editorial Review Board for the State Bar of California’s Labor and Employment Law Review.
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