California employers are allowed to conduct background checks on employees and job applicants, but there are laws that regulate when and how to do so. The California Investigative Personal Information Act (CIPA) requires employers to disclose certain information after performing a background check. Additionally, applicants have separate rights under the federal background check law. In this article, we will look at applicants' rights and employer responsibilities under California background check laws. When employers conduct their investigations on their own, the CIPA requires that they give applicants the option of “opting to receive a copy of their background check reports.” Most states have a provision stating that a background check that results in a person being denied a position based solely on the conclusion that the type of charge found in the background and used against them must have a direct impact on the job due to the nature of the crime.
If an applicant decides not to check the box to receive all the reports, they can pay out of pocket to a company to do their background check. There are some limited exceptions to these rules, such as when the employer is a criminal justice agency or a state or local agency that is required by law to perform a criminal background check. If the background check is not correct, the California Fair Opportunity Act requires the employer to evaluate whether the applicant should continue to receive work in light of the seriousness of the crime and the nature of the crime. The Fair Opportunity Act is designed to provide employment applicants with criminal records with an opportunity to advance the application process, so that employers can learn about them before they are allowed to perform a criminal background check. To ensure accuracy, consumer reporting agencies must rely on a minimum of two identifiers to verify that a criminal record belongs to an applicant. The best option is to request a pre-employment background check from a trusted partner such as iProspectCheck.