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Can My Potential Employer in Chicago Require a Credit Check?

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Unemployment can be a double-edged sword for some families. Past-due bills and financial hardship can create a less-than-perfect credit score. So why do some employers find it necessary to run a credit check for potential employees? While Federal law requires written permission for an employer to check your credit, it can be unsettling to go through the interview process and worry that your credit score might prevent you from obtaining the job you desperately need to repair your credit rating.

Reasons for Employers to Conduct Credit Checks

Some employers claim they need to check your credit history if you will be trusted with any amount of money. Other employers believe an unfavorable credit score can reflect poorly upon how a potential employee handles responsibility. In addition, a credit check will verify past employment. You must be aware once you give written permission to check your credit to your employer, they can continue to run checks in the future. Promotions or transfers may be impacted by these continued credit checks.

Regulations for Employee Credit Checks

As of 2014, Washington and Hawaii are the only two states with any regulations on when and how a potential employer can look into your credit history. For employees in these states, the employer may only run a credit check if it pertains to your job and the employer must disclose this reasoning. Specific protocol must be followed to give potential employees the required information.

Important Issues of Credit Checks

With a poor economy or a life hardship such as a medical issue, many potential employees feel it is extremely unfair to base how responsible they are on their credit history. If an employer utilizes a credit report to determine if they want to hire someone, the employer should give the individual an opportunity to explain a poor report. It should be noted that employers do not receive your actual credit score, and your score will not be affected by the inquiry.

Chicago Employment Rights

If you feel your rights have been violated in the employment process, you need to contact a Chicago employment lawyer at Goldman & Ehrlich. Schedule your free consultation today.