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Conducting A New York State Background Check

New York offers some of the best talent in the world. Part of the hiring process is conducting a transparent New York state background check that gives you the information you need while being fair to candidates.

Businesses need to know which New York background check law applies to them to avoid violations and make sure a candidate’s rights are respected.

What Is Reported On A New York Criminal Background Check?

When you conduct a pre-employment background check, the information you see depends on what you ask for. Checkr takes the hassle out of background checks by allowing you to customize your requests.

Criminal History Report

If a candidate has a record, a criminal history background check will contain information like charges, misdemeanor/felony, dispositions, date of arrest, and case numbers. Sealed records are not reported on a NY state police background check.

Employment Verification

This check displays all former employers, their positions, and when they worked there. Employment verification is vital for ensuring candidates have the right level of experience.

Education Verification

Education verification returns detailed information about which institutions a candidate attended, when they attended, as well as any degrees or diplomas they received.

Federal Laws that Apply to New York State Background Checks

All background checks in the country must comply with Federal laws, and when conducting a NY background check, you must be aware of these laws to avoid inadvertently infringing upon a candidate’s rights. With Checkr, every pre-employment check complies with current Federal laws to ensure your hiring process is fair and transparent.

Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)

Enacted in 1970, the FCRA is the law that protects the privacy of consumers. It also extends to records on employment candidates. In practice, it means consumer reporting agencies may only report certain types of information, and employers may only use specific pieces of information in their hiring decisions. At the heart of the FCRA is the seven-year lookback period. In other words, criminal and civil suits may not be disclosed if they are older than seven years. For positions with salaries of more than $75,000, this rule does not apply. When carrying out a New York state background check, employers must notify the candidate and receive written consent in writing.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act 1964

Overseen by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), Title VII prohibits discrimination based on certain protected statuses. To comply with Title VII, employers are advised to assess a candidate’s criminal history and compare it to the specific job they applied for. This comparison should be done before hiring decisions are made based on a criminal record. In short, a criminal history alone should never be a sentence to perpetual unemployment.

New York State Background Check Laws

All employers are required to follow the laws of the state to guarantee fair hiring practices are respected. New York City background check law must be adhered to, or your organization could be liable to legal action and further penalties. We work hard to ensure that our clients can conduct fair and legally compliant pre-employment checks.

Fair Chance Act

Under the Fair Chance Act, a criminal history check in NY may only be carried out after an employer has made a conditional offer. Conditional offers are defined by offers that can only be withdrawn based on the results of a criminal background check, a medical examination, or other information that comes to light.

Background checks need to be carried out in two phases. Firstly, they must make noncriminal checks before a conditional offer is tabled. Only then can motor vehicle records and criminal histories be checked.

NYC Expansion of Ban-the-Box Laws

Ban-the-Box laws state that hiring managers can only ask about an applicant’s criminal history and conduct a subsequent background check after making sure the candidate is fully qualified for the role. Within New York City, Buffalo, and Rochester, ban-the-box laws have been expanded to cover the private sector. New York City applies the rule to all businesses with more than four employees. Buffalo and Rochester have enacted ordinances that prevent employers from asking about criminal histories on job applications and before the initial interview.

District-Specific Laws

District-specific laws must be taken into account. For example, a New York background check in Buffalo may come with different rules than a check conducted in New York City. Checkr has the information required to properly conduct background checks by district.

Credit Check Restrictions

New York City employers are prohibited from carrying out credit checks on most job applicants. The only exceptions are for those positions that require them according to Federal law and the NYC Human Rights Law.

New York Background Check FAQs

At Checkr, we understand that background check laws can be confusing. Here are answers to some of the most common questions employers have.

How many years does a criminal report cover?

According to the FCRA, employers may not look back any further than seven years.

How can I obtain a NY background check?

Choose Checkr. We help you maneuver the world of background checks while complying with Federal, state, and local laws.

How long does it take to complete a New York state background check?

It can take weeks to deal with multiple agencies, especially if you want to know about out-of-state convictions. With Checkr, we get the job done quickly. We aim to return comprehensive information to employers within a couple of days.

Build A Better Future With Fair Background Checks

Leverage the power of technology and gain access to the most talented employees with the help of Checkr. Streamline your hiring process with our AI-powered background check platform. We believe all candidates deserve a fair chance to work and that companies shouldn’t have to jump through hoops to find their perfect match. As an authorized applicant agency and leading technology company in the background check industry, we make hiring better, fairer, and more efficient. Transform your hiring with Checkr today.