Employers in Florida are joining their counterparts around the nation in relying more and more heavily on professional and independent background checks before confirming the hire of a new employee. It is only fair that businesses are able to trust that the information a candidate provides on a resume or job application is accurate and honest. Understanding a person’s potential criminal history may also be essential to protecting the business’ interests.
BLR explains that employers are bound by the law and expected to treat employees and candidates fairly as well. For example, all information received via a background check must be kept strictly confidential. It is also against the law to use the presence of a criminal record as a reason not to hire someone except in very specific cases including when the criminal charge relates to the nature of employment.
For example, hiring a person to work as a bookkeeper may not be something a company wants to do if they learn that person has previously been convicted of embezzling money from a prior employer. Convictions for first degree misdemeanors or felonies may be used as cause to preclude hiring.
The State of Florida outlines two different levels of standards that may be required for screenings related to employment. Level 1 and Level 2 standards are provided for varying types of jobs. Level 2 screening standards, for example, require the use of digital fingerprints. In addition to local and state criminal records, a candidate’s federal criminal history may also be investigated with a Level 2 screening.