Connecticut Better Business Bureau suggests you check your free credit report before you apply for a job, because a job offer may be dependent upon the results of a background check, including your credit history.
Employers have the right to ask for a credit check and may do so for a variety of reasons, especially if it is a company that handles consumers’ personal financial information.
“You should be aware of any inaccuracies in your credit report and correct them before they are seen by a potential employer,” according Connecticut Better Business Bureau President, Paulette Scarpetti.
Consumers may obtain a free, no-strings-attached credit report every 12 months from each of the three major credit reporting companies through the government-sanction website http://www.annualcreditreport.com, or by calling 877-322-8228.
Credit reports contain information about your credit history including if you pay your bills on time, if someone has sued you and how much money you owe.
An employment background check also may include a check of your criminal record and driving history. However, they cannot do a background check without your permission. No permission is necessary if they want to check your social media profile and personal history through an internet search engine.
Employers are prohibited from telling candidates they may not apply if they have a criminal record, and if you are rejected as a candidate because of information revealed in your background report, the company must inform you by what is called an Adverse Action Notice and provide you with contact information of the company that wrote the report.
If you feel you have been treated unfairly based on the contents of a background check and that the employer broke the rules, you may file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at 877-382-4357 or online at http://www.ftc.gov.