Learn about the impact that credit reports have on employment – and how you can fight back when erroneous information is used against you.
When you apply for a new job or are being considered for a promotion, your employer or potential employer may do a background check, and in the process access your credit report. In fact, it’s estimated that about half of all employers pull credit reports on potential employees. An employer credit check is perfectly legal – providing the employer follows certain procedures in accordance with the law. Here’s what you need to know about employment credit reports.
When it comes to credit reports and employment, an employer must abide by the Fair Credit Reporting Act. This means that your employer (or potential employer, if you’re a job applicant) must inform you that the company intends to contact consumer reporting agencies and obtain your credit report. But that’s not all. The employer must also obtain your express permission to access your credit report. This typically involves the employer asking you to sign a consent form. Further, if an employer is going to use your credit report as a factor in determining whether or not to hire you or promote you (or take another adverse action against you), he must let you know that in advance. Finally, if he does take an adverse action after reviewing your credit report, he is required by law to send you a notification to that effect.
If your employer or potential employer hasn’t followed each of these steps, he is in violation of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). With the help of a fair debt and fair credit attorney, you can file a federal lawsuit for violations of the FCRA. You can receive actual damages, or between $100 and $1,000 – whichever is more. In addition, you can receive punitive damages and attorney fees.
If you or someone you know is the victim of FCRA violations, complete our online form or call (855) 301-2100. Lemberg Law’s legal team will evaluate your case at no cost to you, and will help you get the justice you deserve.