NY City Ban-The-Box Legislation Further Illustrates Urgent Need to Work with Third-Party Background Screening Company's; States CriminalBackgroundRecords.com

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As stated on the New York City government website (www1.nyc.gov; Jun. 29, 15) New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio signed a law banning potential employers from asking about criminal history on employment applications. (1) In a recent commentary regarding this legislation, Adam Almeida, President and CEO of CriminalBackgroundRecords.com, states: "This action by the Mayor of New York further illustrates the urgent need for employers in any state to work with a third-party background screening company in order to remain compliant within a highly fluid legal environment."

Criminal Background Records

Criminal Background Records

The "Ban-the-Box" legislation continues to move forward and understanding the fair and legal use of criminal history reports remains complex.

The use of criminal history records and information remains under attack regarding their use as part of pre-employment background screening. Combined with actions of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the use of criminal history remains challenging. Based on the New York City Government website announcement (www1.NYC.gov; Jun 29, 15), the recent enactment of "Ban-the-Box" legislation in New York City highlights the urgent need for all employers to work with third-party background screening companies in order to remain legally compliant in the use of criminal histories. (2)

Adam Almeida, President and CEO of CriminalBackgroundRecords.com states: "The use of criminal history information will remain a challenge for all employers. The "Ban-the-Box" legislation continues to move forward and understanding the fair and legal use of criminal history reports remains complex."

Across the nation the debate over the use of criminal records continues. A recent article in the National Law Review highlights the EEOC's recent actions indicating that the use of criminal history records will remain a challenge. (National Law Review, Jun. 23, 15)

From The National Law Review (natlawreview.com, Jun. 23, 15):

Background checks, particularly those that exclude applicants based on criminal history, are at the forefront of the EEOC’s priority to eliminate barriers in recruitment and hiring. Despite suffering a recent embarrassing defeat in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, the EEOC likely will continue to closely scrutinize policies and practices that exclude applicants based on criminal and credit history, even if such policies are facially neutral. (3)

The National Employment Law Project (nelp.org, Jul 01, 15) states that the Ban-the-Box "initiatives provide applicants a fair chance by removing the conviction history question on the job application and delaying the background check inquiry until later in the hiring." But this is only the first step. It also outlines when and where a criminal background check is relevant and, subsequently, legal. (4)

Almeida states: ""Ban-the-box" legislation really creates a tricky and complex legal environment. With the EEOC continuing to pursue legal actions against companies allegedly in the wrong over the use of criminal history, all companies should be keenly aware of their legal obligation."

A recent commentary posted to CorpCounsel.com (Jun. 18, 15) highlights the challenge an employer faces during the hiring process, specific to the use of criminal history.

From the website CorpCounsel.com (Jun. 18, 15):

Employers are forced to walk an increasingly narrow tightrope as they decide whether to use an individual’s criminal history in making employment decisions. On the one hand, employers are concerned about subjecting themselves to liability by not having enough information about potential employees. On the other, many states and local governments are enacting “ban the box” laws that limit employers’ use of criminal history information. (5)

Almeida states: "Once again, recent action in New York City, highlights the urgent need for all companies and organizations that utilize background checks work with a third-party employment screening company to ensure compliance with all state and federal law."

CriminalBackgroundRecords.com is a third-party background screening company that can provide a low-cost solution to all screening requirements. From pre-employment to post-hire screening, as well as volunteer, caregiver and nanny checks, CriminalBackgroundRecords.com provides background screening services across a broad array of industries. From the smallest organization to the largest corporation, CriminalBackgroundRecords.com can fulfill every background screening requirement.


1.    www1.nyc.gov/office-of-the-mayor/news/456-15/mayor-de-blasio-signs-fair-chance-act-#/0
2.    www1.nyc.gov/office-of-the-mayor/news/456-15/mayor-de-blasio-signs-fair-chance-act-#/0
3.    natlawreview.com/article/background-checks-eeoc-seeks-to-eliminate-barriers-to-recruitment-and-hiring
4.    nelp.org/publication/ban-the-box-fair-chance-hiring-state-and-local-guide/
5.    corpcounsel.com/id=1202729713445/An-Employment-Law-Tightrope-Criminal-Background-Checks?slreturn=20150610142148

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