Are Felons the New Protected Class?: The Criminal Background Check Minefield – Part Two

By | Employment Law Lookout | August 22, 2013

We recently described here how the culmination of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (“EEOC”) aggressive enforcement of its April 25, 2012 Enforcement Guidance and numerous state and local ban-the-box laws has created a new criminal background check minefield protecting criminals at the expense of employers.  But how are employers supposed to respond?

Criminal Records & Hiring Screens: EEOC Scolded for “Laughable” Evidence of Discrimination – Jerry Maatman

By | LXBN | August 22, 2013
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The EEOC has recently made policing the use of criminal records in the hiring process a major priority of theirs—but so far, it is not going very well. In the much-discussed EEOC v. Freeman suit, where the EEOC sued the event management company for allegedly discriminatory practices, the EEOC was scolded strongly for evidence deemed to be “laughable” and “unreliable.”

U.S. Commission On Civil Rights’ Action On Draft Report On the EEOC’s Guidance On Hiring Screens

U.S. Commission On Civil Rights’ Action On Draft Report On the EEOC’s Guidance On Hiring Screens

Since April 25, 2012 – when the EEOC issued its guidance on the use of arrest and conviction information in employment – employers have been struggling with what it means for their hiring practices. As we wrote about here and here, the EEOC has been extremely aggressive in pursuing litigation seeking to enforce the concepts set forth in the guidance. 

Court Dismisses EEOC’s Background Check Lawsuit Based On Its Reliance On “Laughable” and “Unreliable” Expert Report Filled of “Errors and Analytical Fallacies”

Court Dismisses EEOC’s Background Check Lawsuit Based On Its Reliance On “Laughable” and “Unreliable” Expert Report Filled of “Errors and Analytical Fallacies”

In a scathing opinion issued today in EEOC v. Freeman, No. 09-CV-2573 (D. Md. Aug. 9, 2013), Judge Roger Titus of the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland dismissed a nationwide pattern or practice lawsuit brought by the EEOC (previously discussed here and here) that alleged that Freeman, Inc., a service provider for corporate events, unlawfully relied upon credit and criminal background checks that caused a disparate impact against African-American, Hispanic, and male job applicants.

The EEOC’s Position On Criminal Background Checks Puts Financial Services Industry in a “Catch-22”

Approximately 92% of employers use criminal background checks for some or all job openings. This number is, or should be, 100% in the financial services industry, where FDIC regulations require insured depository institutions to check for any convicted criminal offenses involving dishonesty, money laundering, and any other breach of trust.

On the EEOC and Blanket Prohibitions Against Hiring Individuals with Conviction Records

On June 28th, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced a settlement agreement with J.B. Hunt Transport, Inc. – a transportation company – to resolve allegations that the company discriminated against an African-American candidate for a truck driver position, because J.B. Hunt’s hiring policy considers criminal convictions that are unrelated to the duties of the job.