The EEOC’s March 10, 2014, release of guidance on background checks is proof positive that the agency is continuing its focus on aspects of the hiring process that it believes might have an adverse impact on protected groups.  Its latest guidance, issued jointly with the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) however, recognizes that background checks remain a legitimate and lawful part of employer screening processes so long as they conform with the Fair Credit Reporting Act and other state and local laws (such as those restricting inquiry into or use of arrest, conviction and credit history).

Nevertheless, employers still should consult with counsel when developing and updating background check processes because of the multitude of complex state and local requirements that apply.  For more information, see our Client Alert.