Volume 7, Edition 6, June 2011

This Month’s Challenge is sponsored by:



D is the correct answer. All information used by employers to qualify someone for employment must be job related. Thus, the relevance of credit information must be job specific. A few states have passed laws advertised as “restricting” the use of credit reports, but the bottom line is that there is no substantial change. Hawaii and Washington passed general laws restricting the use of credit reports to when required by law or where it is substantially job related (the traditional EEOC standard). The states of Oregon, Illinois and Maryland passed statutes that have the general limitations but also contain lists of employers and positions where the use of credit reports is specifically authorized as being job related. Employers in those states should check those statutes for the specifics of these safe harbors.

An employer wants to obtain credit reports as part of the pre-employment screening process. Can the employer order these reports?

A. No. The use of credit reports for employment has been prohibited by the EEOC.

B. It depends. The use of credit reports have been prohibited by several states, so it depends upon where the applicant is being hired.

C. An employer may obtain a credit report if an employee will handle money.

D. Yes. An employer may request a credit report if the information is job related.


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