EMPLOYMENT BACKGROUND CHECKS
Pennsylvania Employment Background Check Screening Services
All employment screening services including pre-employment drug screening and pre-employment criminal record background checks are available in Pennsylvania.
Pennsylvania Court Rules Background Screening Law Unconstitutional
As reported in Littler BY JENNIFER MORA AND WILLIAM SIMMONS ON
JANUARY 19, 2016
On December 30, 2015, the Commonwealth Court in Pennsylvania unanimously found the Older Adults Protective Services Act’s (the Act) lifetime prohibition on the ability of individuals with convictions to hold certain jobs in nursing homes and long-term care facilities to be unconstitutional on its face, under its interpretation of the Pennsylvania state constitution.1
Specifically, the court held that the lifetime ban provisions violate a convicted individual’s due process rights because the individual is penalized for engaging in conduct that may have happened decades ago and is presumed unfit for the jobs at issue.
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act prohibits employers from basing an employment decision solely on an applicant’s arrest record.
While Pennsylvania employers may consider conviction information that is part of an employment applicant’s criminal history record when making a hiring decision, but must limit that consideration only to the extent to which the convictions relate to the applicant’s suitability for employment in the applied-for position.
Other provisions of the EEOC apply. Please see our page on
The court also concluded that the law’s lifetime ban on the ability of convicted individuals to work for these types of employers is not “substantially related” to the purpose set out in the Act, which is to protect older persons from abuse, neglect and exploitation.
Until any appeal period lapses or any appeal is decided, and while new legislation is considered, the court’s decision creates substantial uncertainty for covered employers in Pennsylvania regarding disqualifying criminal record offenses.
History of the Older Adults Protective Services Act
Title 18, § 9124 – Pennsylvania Criminal History Record Information – Dissemination of Criminal History Record Information – Use of records by licensing agencies.
Our criminal records Smart Search Plus® has become the industry standard for an FCRA compliant quality criminal records background check.
It includes an unlimited check of the Federal criminal records repositories in the states where the applicant has lived for the past 7 years.
It also includes a check of any needed state and county criminal records checks as well as a social security number address history trace, a multi-state criminal records database search and a check of of the sex offender registry in all 50 states.
It is the criminal records background check now chosen by most of our clients. For a brief overview of all of our employment screening services, please Click Here
(a) STATE AGENCIES – Except as provided by this chapter, a board, commission or department of the Commonwealth, when determining eligibility for licensing, certification, registration or permission to engage in a trade, profession or occupation, may consider convictions of the applicant of crimes but the convictions shall not preclude the issuance of a license, certificate, registration or permit.
(b) PROHIBITED — — USE OF INFORMATION – The following information shall not be used in consideration of an application for a license, certificate, registration or permit:
(1) Records of arrest if there is no conviction of a crime based on the arrest.
(2) Convictions which have been annulled or expunged.
(3) Convictions of a summary offense.
(4) Convictions for which the individual has received a pardon from the Governor.
(5) Convictions which do not relate to the applicant’s suitability for the license, certificate, registration or permit.
(c) STATE ACTION AUTHORIZED – Boards, commissions or departments of the Commonwealth authorized to license, certify, register or permit the practice of trades, occupations or professions may refuse to grant or renew, or may suspend or revoke any license, certificate, registration or permit for the following causes:
(1) Where the applicant has been convicted of a felony.
(2) Where the applicant has been convicted of a misdemeanor which relates to the trade, occupation or profession for which the license, certificate, registration or permit is sought.
(d) NOTICE – The board, commission or department shall notify the individual in writing of the reasons for a decision which prohibits the applicant from practicing the trade, occupation or profession if such decision is based in whole or part on conviction of any crime.
Title 18, § 9125 – Criminal History Record Information – Dissemination of Criminal History Record Information – Use of records for employment
(a) GENERAL RULE – Whenever an employer is in receipt of information which is part of an employment applicant’s criminal history record information file, it may use that information for the purpose of deciding whether or not to hire the applicant, only in accordance with this section.
(b) — — USE OF INFORMATION – Felony and misdemeanor convictions may be considered by the employer only to the extent to which they relate to the applicant’s suitability for employment in the position for which he has applied.
(c) NOTICE – The employer shall notify in writing the applicant if the decision not to hire the applicant is based in whole or in part on criminal history record information.
Employment Screening In Pennsylvania
National Employment Screening provides professional pre employment screening services to Pennsylvania employers to help you protect your employees and clients from the costly effects of making a “Bad Hire.”
We serve Scranton, Reading, Altoona, Harrisburg, Philadelphia and other Pennsylvania cities.
Pennsylvania employment screening law: Pennsylvania Employment Law At Will Doctrine
In Pennsylvania, employees are presumed to be “at will.” At-will employees may be terminated for any reason, so long as it’s not illegal.
Generally, employees who work under an employment contract can only be terminated for reasons specified in the contract.
In Pennsylvania, to overcome the presumption of at-will employment, an employee must demonstrate facts and circumstances establishing some tenure of employment. It is very difficult to overcome the presumption of at-will employment in Pennsylvania.
Pennsylvania employment screening law: Giving employment References In Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania Senate Bill 69 provides some protection to employers and adds to the judicial code a new section under which an employer who provides information about a former or current employee’s job performance to a prospective employer “is immune from civil liability for such disclosure or its consequences”
in any case brought by the employee, unless the employee can prove by “clear and convincing evidence” that the employer acted in bad faith.
The statute specifically defines the four circumstances in which an employee may rebut the privilege, by adducing sufficient clear and convincing evidence that the employer:
(1) disclosed information that it knew was false or should have known was false;
(2) knowingly disclosed materially misleading information;
(3) recklessly disclosed false information; or (4) disclosed information the disclosure of which was prohibited by law.
Pennsylvania Employment Law: 26 18 Pa. Cons. Stat. § 9125., Denying Employment:
Employers in Pennsylvania may only consider a job applicant’s felony or misdemeanor convictions if they relate to the applicant’s suitability for employment.26 Occupational.
For the complete Pennsylvania Employment screening statute: Click Here
Pennsylvania employment screening law: New Social Security Number Law In Pa
Employers doing business in Pennsylvania should review their practices regarding the use and disclosure of social security numbers in light of a new state law increasing protection against their theft and improper use.
With some exceptions, S.B. 601 applies to Pennsylvania businesses and government agencies and is effective 180 days from enactment. Governor Ed Rendell signed the legislation on June 29, 2006.