Maryland Legislature Overrode Governor’s Veto on Ban-the-Box Law Highlighting Need to Work w/Background Screening Agency; Opines CriminalBackgroundRecords.com

Share Article

Recently, the Maryland legislature overrode the governor’s veto of a Ban-the-Box law designed to assist individuals with criminal records from checking the criminal history question on employment applications. Adam Almeida, President and CEO of CriminalBackgroundRecords.com, opines: “The Maryland Ban-the-Box law should be an immediate reminder to hiring managers to ensure application and pre-screening policies are compliant with law and a best practice remains for hiring managers and HR Departments to work with a well-qualified third-party pre-employment background screening agency such as CriminalBackgroundRecords.com as laws, such as the one in Maryland, can change or reverse very quickly.”

Criminal Background Checks Include County, Statewide, Multi-State and National Criminal Background Checks.

Criminal Background Records

As the use of criminal background checks in the hiring process continues to be a hotly debated issue a best practice remains for all hiring managers and HR Departments to work with a professional employment screening agency.

Maryland’s legislature recently reversed the governor’s veto of a Ban-the-Box law. Adam Almeida, President and CEO of CriminalBackgroundRecords.com opines: “Laws governing pre-employment background screening can change or reverse quickly, such as the Ban-the-Box law in Maryland; and a best practice remains that hiring managers and/or HR departments should work with a well-qualified third-party pre-employment background screening agency, such as CriminalBackgroundRecords.com, in order to remain fully compliant with law.”

Ban-the-Box laws have proven critical to individuals with criminal histories by avoiding the question of a criminal past on an application of employment. Such was the reason for the Ban-the-Box law in Maryland.

From the webpage of WBAL-TV on January 30, 2020:

The Maryland House and Senate voted Thursday to override the governor's veto of a bill that eliminates a question on job applications.

The question asks whether the job applicant has a criminal history. Supporters contend the bill gives those with a criminal past a better shot at getting a job. (1)

Almeida states: “Ban-the-Box laws have spread across the country and affect a large percentage of the employable population. Companies large and small should be aware that these laws can effect their hiring practices and the EEOC remains diligent in enforcement of fair hiring practices and laws such as those related to Ban-the-Box.”

From the webpage of Fox Baltimore on January 30, 2020:

The bill would still allow employers to ask a job applicant about their criminal past but only during a follow-up interview.

But others, who support Governor Hogan's veto of the "Ban the Box" bill, argued that the measure would place an unfair burden on employers. (2)

Ban-the-Box laws will remain contentious as they are enacted across the country.

Additionally, there are penalties for non-compliance with the Ban-the-Box law in Maryland.

From the National Review on February 3, 2020:

The Maryland Commissioner of Labor and Industry (“the Commissioner”) is tasked with enforcement of the Act. If the Commissioner determines that an employer has violated the Act, the Commissioner will “issue an order compelling compliance.” For subsequent violations of the Act, the Commissioner has the discretion to assess a civil penalty up to $300 for each applicant or employee whose criminal background record the employer has inquired about in violation of the Act. The Commissioner will consider the following factors in determining the amount of any civil penalty assessed against an employer who violates the Act: “(1) the gravity of the violation; (2) the size of the employer’s business; (3) the employer’s good faith; and (4) the employer’s history of violations [of the Act].” (3)

Almeida concludes: “As the use of criminal background checks in the hiring process continues to be a hotly debated issue a best practice remains for all hiring managers and HR Departments to work with a well-qualified third-party pre-employment background agency in order to remain compliant with all laws governing background screening.”

CriminalBackgroundRecords.com is a third-party employment screening company, an advocate of SHRM, a member in good standing with the PBSA (Professional Background Screening Association) and for over 17 years has maintained an A+ Rating with the BBB (Better Business Bureau). The company has highly trained operators well versed in the needs and requirements of companies and organizations large and small utilizing public records, such as criminal background records, as part of a hiring process. Assisting companies in maintaining full compliance under the law is a central tenet of all client relationships with CriminalBackgroundRecords.com.

Notes:
(1)    wbaltv.com/article/maryland-ban-the-box-bill-veto-override/30717600
(2)    foxbaltimore.com/news/local/job-applications-in-md-wont-be-able-to-ask-about-criminal-history
(3)    natlawreview.com/article/maryland-legislature-overrides-governor-s-veto-ban-box-legislation

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Visit website