What to Do When a Background Check Returns Negative Information

The Fair Credit Reporting Agency Act protects consumers by stipulating that anyone, employer, landlord, or loan officer, who denies you a job or services based on the results of your background check is required to provide you with the information so that you can contest it and fix any inaccuracies.

According to a recent news article, a background check company based in Indianapolis as well as a healthcare organization are in hot water due to an inaccurate background check that resulted in a woman being denied a job as a nurse. The healthcare organization denied the woman employment as a result of a background check that reported multiple felonies and a felony conviction for possession of drug paraphernalia and theft. But when the woman, whose criminal history was in fact spotless, asked to see her background report, she was simply informed that she would not be hired. According to her claims, as the company did not give her an appropriate chance to correct the misinformation, they were in violation of the FCRA provisions.

Common Background Check Inaccuracies

The woman’s case is unfortunately not uncommon as the National Consumer Law Center reports that screening companies routinely suffer these pitfalls when conducting checks:

  • mismatching people and criminal records
  • omitting crucial information about a case
  • revealing sealed or expunged information
  • misclassifying offenses

It is critically important to use screening companies that pull from state level repositories as opposed to only the FBI database and who crosscheck verifications especially when negative results are found.

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