Category: Background Checks

Social Security One Trace vs. Consent Based Social Security Verification: Why Employers Should be Doing Both Searches

Identity theft is a common problem in the world today, and the numbers are staggering; according to an article written by MSNBC technology correspondent Bob Sullivan, 20% of Americans are victims of identity theft (Sullivan, Bob. (2005, June 30). Just how common is ID theft? Retrieved from http://www.nbcnews.com/id/8409283/ns/technology_and_science-security/t/just-how-common-id-theft/#.WZ8goD6GNCF).

Considering this statistic, it is no surprise that today’s employers want to verify the identity of their applicants. Two particular Justifacts searches: Social Security One Trace and Consent Based Social Security Verification can help to confirm that the person you are hiring really IS the person you are hiring.

What’s the difference between a US OneTrace and a Consent Based Social Security Verification?

It is important to understand the difference between these two searches and how they both impact the overall results of your background screening search.

The US OneTrace provides name and address history data associated with a particular Social Security Number (SSN). Data is sourced from a multi-jurisdictional database that includes information provided by hundreds of public and private sources.

The results of this search include:

• Other names and addresses that are associated with that particular social security number.

• The state and the approximate date of issuance of that particular SSN (for SSN’s issued prior to the Social Security Administration’s randomization initiative started in June 25, 2011)

• Comparison to the Social Security Administration’s Death Master Index to ensure that the SSN provided does not belong to a deceased person.

This information has an important impact on your background screening report. Since criminal record searches are strictly name based, you want to be sure that you are searching all current and previous names of your applicants. If an applicant has a criminal history under their maiden name, it will not show up in a search under their married name alone.

Address history is also important because you want to make sure that you are searching records in the jurisdiction where your applicant has lived. For example, if your applicant has lived in multiple states, you want to make sure that you are doing a search that covers criminal records in all of those states.

The Consent Based Social Security Verification (CBSV) verifies that your applicants name, date of birth, and SSN match that on record with the Social Security Administration. This search will return either a “yes” or “no” verification. If records show that the SSN holder is deceased, this search will return a death indicator.

While the CBSV does not verify identity or citizenship, it can tell you if your applicant is using a SSN that belongs to someone else as per Social Security Administration records. This is a red flag that may not show up in a US OneTrace search alone. Your applicant may very well have a long and solid history of previous names and addresses that may not necessarily alert employers to any red flags.

Therefore, Justifacts recommends doing both the US OneTrace to confirm name and address history, in addition to the CBSV to confirm that your applicant has provided a SSN that is indeed their own.

Delaware to Ban Salary History Questions in December 2017

Special Announcement to all Delaware employers :

The State of Delaware passed a law (House Substitute 1 for House Bill 1) amending Title 19 of the Delaware Code. This bill prohibits employers from seeking for, or asking from job applicants, their wage history.  The Governor of Delaware signed the law on 06/14/17 and it will be effective  on 12/14/2017.

Among other things, the law makes the following an unlawful practice:

For an employer or prospective employer to seek the compensation history of an applicant or employee from the applicant or employee; or a current or former employer of the applicant or employee.

Nothing in this section prohibits an employer or an employer’s agent from seeking the applicant’s compensation history after an offer of employment with terms of compensation has been extended to the applicant and accepted, for the sole purpose of confirming the applicant’s compensation history.

This law will require a review of the hiring process in place, including any documentation or forms that all applicants must complete, and may require changes to that process.

Justifacts recommends that you consult with your legal department to determine what changes, if any, need to be made to your hiring process in order to comply with this law.

The complete text of the legislation can be found here:

http://legis.delaware.gov/BillDetail?legislationId=25664

It is important to note that Justifacts is providing this information as a service to our clients. None of the information contained herein should be construed as legal advice, nor is Justifacts engaged to provide legal advice. Although we go to great lengths to make sure our information is accurate and useful, we recommend you consult your attorney or legal department if you want assurance that our information, and your interpretation of it, is appropriate to your particular situation.

DC Law to Limit Use of Credit Reports in Hiring Process

Special Announcement to all District of Columbia employers :

The District of Columbia has passed a law entitled the “Fair Credit History Screening Act (B21-0244)”, which limits the use of credit reports in the hiring process and decision. The mayor signed this bill on 02/15/17 and it becomes effective in 30 days.

The law states the following:

DC Code § 2–1402.11(a)(4)(D)

(a) It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice to do any of the following acts, wholly or partially for a discriminatory reason based upon the actual or perceived: race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, marital status, personal appearance, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, family responsibilities, genetic information, disability, matriculation, or political affiliation, or credit information of any individual:

4. By an employer, employment agency or labor organization. —

D. To directly or indirectly require, request, suggest, or cause any employee to submit credit information, or use, accept, refer to, or inquire into an employee’s credit information.

There are several exceptions, including but not limited to:

• Where an employer is otherwise required by District law to require, request, suggest, or cause any employee to submit credit information, or use, accept, refer to, or inquire into an employee’s credit information.

• Where an employee is applying for a position as or is employed as a police officer with the Metropolitan Police Department, as a special police officer or campus police officer.

• Where an employee is required to possess a security clearance under District law

• To financial institutions, where the position involves access to personal financial information

This law will require a review of the hiring process in place and may require changes to that process. The complete text can be found here:

http://lims.dccouncil.us/Legislation/B21-0244?FromSearchResults=true

Justifacts recommends that you consult with your legal department to determine what changes, if any, need to be made to your hiring process in order to comply with this law.

It is important to note that Justifacts is providing this information as a service to our clients. None of the information contained herein should be construed as legal advice, nor is Justifacts engaged to provide legal advice. Although we go to great lengths to make sure our information is accurate and useful, we recommend you consult your attorney or legal department if you want assurance that our information, and your interpretation of it, is appropriate to your particular situation.

Tips for Confirming an Applicant’s Degree

degree-verification

Confirming degrees can be as easy as 1-2-3 or it could require quite a lot of additional information, follow-up, follow-through, and steps. There are times when specific information is required, so the more the merrier. We recommend providing as much information as is available. There have been many instances that have required a person’s exact name at the time of graduation, date of birth, Social Security number, student identification number, year of graduation, and exact location of the school. Of course there are verifications that require a school-specific waiver to be completed by your candidate. All information we have at our disposal means you have the best chance possible of not only having the results you require but having them back quickly.

International Education

If your candidate had gone to school abroad, Justifacts will provide you with the proper forms and details for verifying the education. We have an international network we utilize for international education confirmation with which we have had great success. We recommend, once you receive the criteria, that you submit everything to us at once, following the requirements carefully. This helps to avoid unnecessary delays or complications. For example, a degree copy may be required of the candidate and the candidate may, instead, substitute transcripts. While this may not hinder a verification, it may create a further delay in receiving the results. Our international vendors are responsive and flexible, but they have provided us with the guidelines based on the experience of verifying information in that specific country in question.

School Delays

Justifacts follows up with schools consistently while the verification is in process, but we never discourage a candidate from contacting the school to help facilitate the process, as well. School’s rely on alumni for many things, and a quick call by a former student to the school’s alumni association may go a long way. Also, a charming call to Mrs. Smith, Guidance Secretary, by a former student she may remember might just push that candidate’s request to the top of the pile.

Location, Location, Location

Sometimes school’s close. We probably all know of a school in our local area that has closed down for one reason or another. The more information we have about the situation, the faster and easier the verification will be for our verification specialists. A school could have merged with another, so a call to the new school would be required. A school might have closed down and sent all student records to the district office or to the Department of Education in that state. The more research involved by our team, the higher the chance of delays there becomes. Having that information upfront or even supplemented during the process by the applicant could make a world of difference. GEDs Throughout the years, Justifacts has seen many times when a candidate will put a testing site as the grantor for the GED. However, 99% of the time the GED is actually conferred through the Department of Education in the state in which they had tested. Also, there are times when a candidate will indicate that they had earned a high school diploma and will write down the last high school they had attended when they had actually earned a GED through the Department of Education. The process is initiated based on the information provided, so a second verification is typically required.

Verification Fees

In our industry we are seeing an increasing number of fees associated with verifications. Not only are the number of schools participating in the outsourcing of records increasing, but we are also seeing an increase in the fees. It is very helpful for our process if we know of a limit to the dollar amount the client would not like to go over automatically. For instance, many clients will approve all fees that are $15.00 and under without further permission for a verification. This helps us to avoid a day or two of emails requesting permission. We do support clients in any way we can, so if it helps with a client’s bookkeeping to know what to expect at invoice time we truly do understand and are flexible with that specification.

Facilitating the process is always a helpful prospect. However, we are a verification company at the end of the day, and we will sometimes go through many hurdles to provide to you what you need. We are in the business of helping our clients hire the right people, and we will do what it takes to make that happen.

Philadelphia to Prohibit Employers’ Use of Salary History in May 2017

The City of Philadelphia, PA passed a law (Bill# 160840) amending the Philadelphia general Code, Title 9 which prohibits employers from seeking for, or asking from job applicants, their wage history. The mayor of Philadelphia signed the law on 01/23/17 and it will be effective in 120 days.

The law makes the following an unlawful practice:

1) To inquire about a prospective employee’s wage history, require disclosure of wage history, or condition employment or consideration for an interview or employment on disclosure of wage history, or retaliate against a prospective employee for failing to comply with any wage history inquiry or for otherwise opposing any act made unlawful by this Chapter.

2) To rely on the wage history of a prospective employee from any current or former employer of the individual in determining the wages for such individual at any stage in the employment process, including the negotiation or drafting of any employment contract, unless such applicant knowingly and willingly disclosed his or her wage history to the employer, employment agency, employee or agent thereof.

This law will require a review of the hiring process in place, including any documentation or forms that all applicants must complete, and may require changes to that process.

Justifacts recommends that you consult with your legal department to determine what changes, if any, need to be made to your hiring process in order to comply with this law. The complete text of the legislation can be found here:

https://phila.legistar.com/View.ashx?M=F&ID=4807621&GUID=4879E82B-7023-4B83-8FD6-2FC2B4FF0EBC

It is important to note that Justifacts is providing this information as a service to our clients. None of the information contained herein should be construed as legal advice, nor is Justifacts engaged to provide legal advice. Although we go to great lengths to make sure our information is accurate and useful, we recommend you consult your attorney or legal department if you want assurance that our information, and your interpretation of it, is appropriate to your particular situation.

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