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Background Checks

‘Angel of death’ case highlights the risk of negligent hiring lawsuits

When news reports surfaced in December that a New Jersey hospital nurse admitted to killing 30 to 40 patients in his 14-year career, a pattern of lax background checks emerged.

Warning: Temp agencies will not do your homework

Issue: Temporary workers who are hired on as employees often fly under the radar of pre-employment checks. Risk: No legal recourse if your temp-turned-employee goes bad. Action: Treat temps …

Background checks: Weigh convictions, not arrests


Q. We’re going back and forth on this question: On an employment application, can we legally ask about an applicant’s prior conviction record or arrest record? —T.F., Nevada

No need to get employees’ OK before misconduct investigations


Good news: Your organization no longer has to notify employees suspected of workplace misconduct that they are targets of third-party investigations. That’s because Congress recently reauthorized the Fair Credit Reporting Act …

RÈsumÈ fraud: Not just for youngsters

Remind managers to scrutinize rÈsumÈ claims of all employees, not just candidates for entry-level jobs. Reason: Experts say more applicants in their 50s and 60s are lying about their age, fudging …

Hiring temps onto your permanent staff? Check their backgrounds

Quick quiz: What does your temp agency contract say about performing background checks? Is it your duty? Is it theirs? Too many employers don’t know the answer. They simply assume a …

Probe deeper into drivers’ work history

The Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has proposed new rules requiring companies that employ commercial drivers to collect more pre-hire information about applicants’ employment history, including their …

Hiring commercial drivers? Probe deeper into applicant work history

If you hire commercial drivers, prepare to start collecting more pre-hire information from applicants. The Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) wants employers to …

How to get the inside scoop from applicant references

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Let applicants respond to background-check results

Issue: You can be held liable for rejecting job applicants because of inaccurate background checks.
Risk: Defamation, invasion of privacy and wrongful-discharge lawsuits …