APSCREEN Introduces Service That Protects Employers That Hire Commercial Drivers

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No way to hide previous driving infractions or licenses now, says background check pioneer.

Now commercial drivers have no way to hide previous driving infractions, accidents or back-up driver's licenses thanks to a new service provided by APSCREEN, the background check pioneer. According to Tom Lawson, APSCREEN CEO, the new service protects employers that hire drivers or contract independent drivers and truckers by allowing them to conduct a thorough commercial driving record background check via the Commercial Driver's License Information System (CDLIS).

"The new service allows employers to check out their drivers including independently contracted ones through a search of the CDLIS which is a cooperative exchange of commercial driver information between jurisdictions nationwide," said Lawson who is a court-appointed expert on negligent hiring.

According to the Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1986 (CMVSA), the basic purpose of CDLIS is to assure that commercial drivers have only one active driver's license, one active record and have passed state-sanctioned driving skills tests, thus helping employers comply with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Act (FMCSA).

Lawson said this new service particularly helps employers who hire independent contractors who drive buses, service/delivery vehicles or trucks with a new level of protection. If an employer hires a driver, they are eligible for the Employers Pull Notice (EPN) program, available in several states which provide automatic updates at the time of an infraction. When a company contracts with an independent driver, however, they are not qualified for the EPN program but must request that the driver provide a K3-style driving record from the DMV.

"Now all drivers are subject to the same pre- and post-employment screening processes," Lawson said. "This not only protects the employer from unknown risks, but also other drivers out there on the road like you and me."

The service will be added to APSCREEN's comprehensive background check services for pre-employment screening. However, employers may also conduct the CDLIS search frequently to monitor its driver's behaviors after being hired, because some drivers will try to hide infractions -- or tickets -- from other states under alias names.

Under APSCREEN's proprietary approach to implementation of this new service, prospective driver candidates are given ample opportunity to disclose information about their driving history and licensure which concentrates the focus on integrity as well as on the substance of discovered record(s). The primary reason for APSCREEN's omission strategy is the lack of plaintiff cases involving omission-based elimination of candidacy claims.

"For example, if a driver is contracted for a job in California, the employer can search the CDLIS prior to hiring and six months down the line," Lawson said. "This gives a much needed opportunity to determine if a driver has more than one license and a window into post-employment driving acts which could affect employer liability."

Employers are subject to a penalty of $10,000 if they knowingly use a driver to operate a commercial motor vehicle without a valid Commercial Driver's License (CDL), and untold liability if a driver has been found to have been negligently hired. Lawson added, "This is yet another tool for the employer's toolbox to avoid negligent hiring lawsuits and make transport a safer environment for all motorists."

Founded in 1980, APSCREEN is based in Rancho Santa Margarita, California and is the originator of the factual employment-screening concept. APSCREEN provides nationwide coverage for businesses seeking the highest caliber, most comprehensive background checks for pre-employment screening. Thomas Lawson, CEO of APSCREEN and a Certified Fraud Examiner, authored the Pre-Employment Screening series, published in The Complete Workplace Violence Prevention Manual, which is used as the gold standard in Best Hiring Practices. APSCREEN also offers tenant screening and employee locate services. More information is available by calling toll-free (800) 277-2733 or register online at http://www.APSCREEN.com.

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CATHY TAYLOR
APSCREEN
800 277-2733
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