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Background Check Legal Complications

Tips to Avoid Legal Complications While Running a Background Check

When it comes to recruiting new staff in a firm, there are vital parts of the process that should neither be ignored nor handled carelessly. One of these is the employee background check.

An employee background check is an integral part of the recruiting process in any organization that should not be taken with levity. It involves the legal and official process of enquiring reliable sources, about the records and stories of the applicant and soon-to-be employee, with the latter’s knowledge and consent.

Usually, we might be tempted to say yes to employing candidates based on how intelligent they sound during the interview process, how attractive their resume is or even how enticing their work experience is, especially when it is in the same field as the one they are needed for in the organization. It still is paramount, however, to not draw conclusions based solely on these things, but to do further study on who you are about to employ. This is safe for the company.

Information Researched in a Background Check

It is important to know what kind of information is needed by your company to assess applicants. More importantly, you should know what kind of information is necessary for the position that the candidate requires. Generally, this is a list of information you need when making a background check on your company’s applicants:

Best Guidelines to Conducting a Background Check in Your Firm

These are necessary steps to include in your company’s screening system for background checks on intending employees.

  • Get the Applicant’s Consent: Make it known to the applicants beforehand that you will be conducting an employee background check as part of the interview process. Let them understand the importance of this, and tell them that it is for the safety of the company and to ascertain their competence and eligibility for the position they have applied for. You must get their consent before you proceed with the process. Do not carry out a background check without the consent of the applicant.
  • Stick to Relevance: In sussing out information on your company’s applicant, research only the information that is relevant to the position that the applicant has applied for. For example, if they have applied for the position of accountant (or any finance-related office), focus on checking their financial and criminal records. Similarly, if they have applied for a health personnel office or heavy equipment operating position, focus on checking their education and certifications. Be careful not to go outside the information your company needs to assess the applicant for the concerned positions, as this may be an infringement on their rights of privacy. Check with your state’s laws.
  • Do Not Discriminate: When you have found out information of various applicants, do not base your decisions on prejudices. It would be unfair to discriminate against applicants because of what you have found out about their personal life when it does not apply to the job. This could destroy your company’s reputation if it is discussed in the open that you turned down a candidate because they are a single mother or they are in a same-sex marriage that you don’t agree with, etc.
  • Do Not Go Against the Law: In different states, information like criminal records, military service history, medical records, court history, and so on are subject to laws and regulation. To keep your company and its reputation safe, obtain information that is made available to you through your state’s laws.
  • Keep it Confidential: After you have obtained all the records you require for the hiring process, your company is now accountable for the applicant’s information made available to you. It is your obligation to keep it confidential, as leaking any of such information or being careless with it could attract legal trouble for your company. Keep all records safe and confidential.

Getting Applicant Consent For Background Check

Affordable Background Checks Will Help

Sadly, most companies ignore background checks on applicants because they could be very expensive. This is not only detrimental to the company’s efficiency but also dangerous. At Affordable Background Checks, we are interested in the staff strength and wealth of your company. Therefore, we assist firms in conducting background checks on their applicants by deriving reliable information from trusted sources, and an affordable cost. Reach out to us now to learn more or to start a background check!

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Gavin Muirhead

Gavin Muirhead has been involved in developing products for background checks and improving online experiences in the background screening industry since 2012. He is the lead author and editor of Affordable Background Checks.