How Far Back Do Pre-Employment Background Checks Go?

Most employers conduct background checks on job applicants as part of the hiring process. A background check can uncover important information such as criminal convictions and can allow an employer to verify an applicant’s education and previous employment. Some employers also check candidates’ credit if they would be working in positions that involve handling money.

Fair Credit Reporting Act Guidelines

Records on individuals can stretch back many years, or even decades. Some information may not be included in a background check if it is more than a specific number of years old. State laws vary, but the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act sets some general guidelines.

The FCRA sets time limits on certain types of information that may be collected as part of a background check. Bankruptcies that are more than 10 years old, tax liens that were paid more than seven years ago, accounts that were sent to a collections agency more than seven years ago, civil suits and civil judgments that are more than seven years old, arrest records that are more than seven years old, and any other adverse actions, except criminal convictions, that are more than seven years old may not be reported to employers. These time limits do not apply to candidates for positions that pay $75,000 or more per year.

Reporting of Criminal Convictions Varies by Location

The FCRA does not set a time limit on the reporting of criminal convictions, but some state laws do. Different counties have different policies on how long they keep records of criminal convictions. Felony records are usually kept for a long time, while records of misdemeanors may be purged sooner.

Records of Past Employment and Education

Employers vary in terms of how long they keep records on past employees. A verification of past employment could turn up records related to employment that was recent or decades old.

Education verification is a credential check. Most colleges and universities keep records indefinitely, so employers can check a candidate’s education regardless of when the degree was earned.

Verifications of Current Status

Some parts of a background check are checks of current status. A Social Security number verification checks to make sure the Social Security number provided is currently registered to the applicant in question. A credit check looks into the current state of a person’s finances, and a license verification checks to make sure an applicant currently holds a valid license.

Contact DataCheck for Help with Pre-Employment Background Checks

If you are planning to hire a new employee, you should conduct a background check to verify an applicant’s education and work history and check for criminal convictions before extending an offer of employment. DataCheck has helped employers all over the United States conduct thorough background checks so they could make the right hiring decisions. We will work to comply with the Fair Credit Reporting Act and all other relevant state and local laws. Contact DataCheck today to get started.

Why a Background Check Should Include Social Security Number Verification

background-check-social-security-number-verificationWhen an employer conducts a background check on a job applicant, it is critical to get the most accurate and complete information possible in order to make an informed decision on whether or not to hire that individual. This can be difficult since multiple people may have the same name and people often change their names, such as when they get married.

Conducting a Social Security number validation and verification is a critical first step that can help employers make sure they are getting accurate and complete information. This will verify that the Social Security number is valid and has been issued to the individual in question.

Verifying an Applicant’s Social Number Can Help You Get Complete Information

A background check that only looks for records based on the applicant’s name and date of birth can leave out information if that person used to be known by a different name. If the person committed a crime while using a maiden name and the background check only searches for records under the person’s married name, the record of the criminal conviction could be overlooked.

Conducting a search based on a Social Security number can provide more complete information. A Social Security number verification can reveal information about other names used and addresses where the individual has lived. Knowing all names used in the past and present allows the company conducting the background check to find any and all criminal records. By knowing about past addresses, the company conducting the background check will know which jurisdictions to check to find possible records of criminal convictions.

Conduct Thorough Background Checks on Job Applicants

If you are looking for candidates for an open position, you should conduct thorough background checks before hiring someone. A background check can reveal information about an applicant’s criminal history that could influence your decision and can protect you from negligent hiring lawsuits. A background check should start with verification of the applicant’s Social Security number to verify identity and to find out which names and addresses to use in conducting further searches.

Contact DataCheck for Help with Pre-Employment Background Checks

DataCheck has helped businesses of all kinds across the United States conduct thorough background checks on job applicants. We will start by verifying an applicant’s Social Security number so we can uncover the most accurate and complete information possible to help in your hiring decision. To conduct a background check on a job applicant, contact DataCheck today.