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Background Checks

As many people have begun to realize, background checks are crucial to gaining and maintaining employment as well as renting and leasing residential apartments, condos and homes.

One question is why this subject matter with merit a entire page of the website. Well, the answer is that over 25% of Californians have some time of criminal history, whether traffic violations or otherwise. What does that mean to you? It means that the next time you apply for a job where you try to sign a lease for an apartment there's a good chance your conviction is going to show up.

There are various laws that apply to background checks, starting with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). This law essentially guarantees your right to get a copy of your background check and to complain or dispute that background check if it's wrong or in accurate. This law was passed because people were denied a place to live or a job due to an accurate or exaggerated reporting on their background. This gives them a right to have a voice in whether or not it's accurate. This law applies in all 50 states, though each state has a right to modify it to some extent.

It should be clear that this information applies to both medical, professional as well as personal information. The law requires employers to notify the applicant that they're going to contact friends, family and prior employers for character references. Also, if you're denied a job or an apartment, they have to tell you why.

So, what does this mean to you? It means that you have a right to the information that is being dug up. It means you have a right to understand why you were denied employment, if that denial was due to negative information on your background check. Further, there is a look back of seven years, beyond which employers cannot longer see negative information.

California has its own privacy laws. Expand on the federal rules and they establish very strict requirements for companies who hire other companies to do the background checks. So, essentially, if you apply to a large retailer, they may hire an outside company to do a background check on you and they have to tell you that they're doing that. I don't me that, but they have to tell you that they're going to contact all of your references and explain why they're doing that investigation and provide you with a summary of your rights so you can see any reports about yourself.

Remember that under current California law employers may not ask you about certain aspects of your criminal record. He cannot ask you about anything they did not enter the conviction, whether you received "version" or any dismissed resealed convictions. Also, they cannot deny you employment based upon those factors.

Remember that under current California law employers may not ask you about certain aspects of your criminal record. They cannot ask you about anything they did not enter the conviction, whether you received "diversion" or any dismissed or sealed convictions. Also, they cannot deny you employment based upon those factors.

Remember that an employer cannot use any expungements or arrests that did not lead to a conviction To deny employment. They also cannot be reported for any reason.

It's crucial that you seek to expunge any criminal conviction on your record as soon as possible. There is no way to know for certain whether or not areas credit reporting agencies can find convictions older than seven years and report them without your knowledge. I advise all my clients to expunge their convictions as soon as possible following the termination of probation.

If you have any questions regarding this you may call me at (949) 474-8008 or contact me at bill@williamweinberg.com. Feel free to look at my website at www.williamweinberg.com for additional information.

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