The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) Terminology and Definitions
Any written, oral, or other communication of any information by a consumer reporting agency bearing on a consumer's credit worthiness, credit standing, credit capacity, character, general reputation, personal characteristics, or mode of living which is used or expected to be used or collected in whole or in part for the purpose of serving as a factor in establishing the consumer's eligibility for
(A) credit or insurance to be used primarily for personal, family, or household purposes;
(B) employment purposes; or
(C) any other purpose authorized under section 604 [§ 1681b].
(2) Exclusions. Except as provided in paragraph (3), the term "consumer report" does not include
(A) subject to section 624, any
(i) report containing information solely as to transactions or experiences between the consumer and the person making the report;
(ii) communication of that information among persons related by common ownership or affiliated by corporate control; or
(iii) communication of other information among persons related by common ownership or affiliated by corporate control, if it is clearly and conspicuously disclosed to the consumer that the information may be communicated among such persons and the consumer is given the opportunity, before the time that the information is initially communicated, to direct that such information not be communicated among such persons;
(B) any authorization or approval of a specific extension of credit directly or indirectly by the issuer of a credit card or similar device;
(C) any report in which a person who has been requested by a third party to make a specific extension of credit directly or indirectly to a consumer
conveys his or her decision with respect to such request, if the third party advises the consumer of the name and address of the person to whom the request was made, and such person makes the disclosures to the consumer required under section 615 [§ 1681m]; or
(D) a communication described in subsection (o) or (x).
Investigative Consumer Report
A consumer report or portion thereof in which information on a consumer's character, general reputation, personal characteristics, or mode of living is obtained through personal interviews with neighbors, friends, or associates of the consumer reported on or with others with whom he is acquainted or who may have knowledge concerning any such items of information. However, such information shall not include specific factual information on a consumer's credit record obtained directly from a creditor of the consumer or from a consumer reporting agency when such information was obtained directly from a creditor of the consumer or from the consumer.
Consumer Reporting Agency
When used in connection with information on any consumer, means all of the information on that consumer recorded and retained by a consumer reporting agency regardless of how the information is stored.
When used in connection with a consumer report means a report used for the purpose of evaluating a consumer for employment, promotion, reassignment or retention as an employee.
"Medical information” --
(1) means information or data, whether oral or recorded, in any form or medium, created by or derived from a health care provider or the consumer, that relates to--
(A) the past, present, or future physical, mental, or behavioral health or condition of an individual;
(B) the provision of health care to an individual; or
(C) the payment for the provision of health care to an individual.
(2) does not include the age or gender of a consumer, demographic information about the consumer, including a consumer's residence address or e-mail address, or any other information about a consumer that does not relate to the physical, mental, or behavioral health or condition of a consumer, including the existence or value of any insurance policy.
State or Local Child Support Enforcement Agency
(A) has the same meaning as in section 701(d)(6) of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act; and
(i) a denial or cancellation of, an increase in any charge for, or a reduction or other adverse or unfavorable change in the terms of coverage or amount of, any insurance, existing or applied for, in connection with the underwriting of insurance;
(ii) a denial of employment or any other decision for employment purposes that adversely affects any current or prospective employee;
(iii) a denial or cancellation of, an increase in any charge for, or any other adverse or unfavorable change in the terms of, any license or benefit described in section 604(a)(3)(D) [§ 1681b]; and
(iv) an action taken or determination that is
(I) made in connection with an application that was made by, or a transaction that was initiated by, any consumer, or in connection with a review of an account under section 604(a)(3)(F)(ii)[§ 1681b]; and
(II) adverse to the interests of the consumer.
(2) Applicable findings, decisions, commentary, and orders. For purposes of any determination of whether an action is an adverse action under paragraph (1)(A), all appropriate final findings, decisions, commentary, and orders issued under section 701(d)(6) of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System or any court shall apply.
Firm Offer of Credit or Insurance
Any offer of credit or insurance to a consumer that will be honored if the consumer is determined, based on information in a consumer report on the consumer, to meet the specific criteria used to select the consumer for the offer, except that the offer may be further conditioned on one or more of the following:
(1) The consumer being determined, based on information in the consumer's application for the credit or insurance, to meet specific criteria bearing on credit worthiness or insurability, as applicable, that are established
(A) before selection of the consumer for the offer; and
(B) for the purpose of determining whether to extend credit or insurance pursuant to the offer.
(A) that the consumer continues to meet the specific criteria used to select the consumer for the offer, by using information in a consumer report on the consumer, information in the consumer's application for the credit or insurance, or other information bearing on the credit worthiness or insurability of the consumer; or
(B) of the information in the consumer's application for the credit or insurance, to determine that the consumer meets the specific criteria bearing on credit worthiness or insurability.
(3) The consumer furnishing any collateral that is a requirement for the extension of the credit or insurance that was
(A) established before selection of the consumer for the offer of credit or insurance; and
(B) disclosed to the consumer in the offer of credit or insurance.
Credit or Insurance Transaction that is Not Initiated by the Consumer
"Credit or insurance transaction that is not initiated by the consumer” does not include the use of a consumer report by a person with which the consumer has an account or insurance policy, for purposes of
(1) reviewing the account or insurance policy; or
(2) collecting the account.
"State” means any State, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the District of Columbia, and any territory or possession of the United States.
Consumer Reporting Agency that Compiles and Maintains Files On Consumers on a Nationwide Basis
A consumer reporting agency that regularly engages in the practice of assembling or evaluating, and maintaining, for the purpose
of furnishing consumer reports to third parties bearing on a consumer's credit worthiness, credit standing, or credit capacity, each of the following regarding consumers residing nationwide:
(1) Public record information.
(2) Credit account information from persons who furnish that information regularly and in the ordinary course of business.
Active Duty Military Consumer
A consumer in military service who--
(A) is on active duty (as defined in section 101(d)(1) of title 10, United States Code) or is a reservist performing duty under a call or order to active duty under a provision of law referred to in section 101(a)(13) of title 10, United States Code; and
(B) is assigned to service away from the usual duty station of the consumer.
Fraud Alert or Active Duty Alert
A statement in the file of a consumer that--
(A) notifies all prospective users of a consumer report relating to the consumer that the consumer may be a victim of fraud, including identity theft, or is an active duty military consumer, as applicable; and
(B) is presented in a manner that facilitates a clear and conspicuous view of the statement described in subparagraph (A) by any person requesting such consumer report.
A fraud committed using the identifying information of another person, subject to such further definition as the Commission may prescribe, by regulation.
Identity Theft Report
(A) that alleges an identity theft;
(B) that is a copy of an official, valid report filed by a consumer with an appropriate Federal, State, or local law enforcement agency, including the
United States Postal Inspection Service, or such other government agency deemed appropriate by the Commission; and
(C) the filing of which subjects the person filing the report to criminal penalties relating to the filing of false information if, in fact, the information in the report is false.
New Credit Plan
Account or Electronic Fund Transfer
Credit or Creditor
Federal Banking Agency
(1) assembles and merges information contained in the database of another consumer reporting agency or multiple consumer reporting agencies concerning any consumer for purposes of furnishing such information to any third party, to the extent of such activities; and
(2) does not maintain a database of the assembled or merged information from which new consumer reports are produced.
Nationwide Specialty Consumer Reporting Agency
A consumer reporting agency that compiles and maintains files on consumers on a nationwide basis relating to--
(1) medical records or payments;
(2) residential or tenant history;
(3) check writing history;
(4) employment history; or
(5) insurance claims.
National Security Investigation
Criminal Records Terminology and Definitions
I. General Criminal Terminology
The judicial decision that ends a criminal proceeding by a judgment, acquittal, conviction, or dismissal of the case.
An individual who is of 18 years old or greater.
Alcohol Education Program
Antitrust Acts or Laws
To take something from another for one's own use or benefit.
Trial by judge without jury.
A certificate of obligation, unsecured or secured with collateral, to pay a specified amount of money within a specified period of time.
A violation or infraction of a law or obligation.
Any type of object designed to assist an individual with committing a burglary.
Case or crime for which the death penalty may be imposed.
Cause of Action
One or more related charges, combined and made against a defendant for wrongs committed.
The acronym for Controlled Dangerous Substance.
An allegation that an individual has committed a specific offense.
A parent's legal obligation to contribute to the maintenance of a child as result of custody or divorce action.
An order issued by a law enforcement officer requiring appearance in court to answer a charge. Bail is not accepted in lieu of appearance.
Courts whose jurisdiction extends over several counties or districts.
Courts that try persons accused of violating municipal civil or criminal ordinances.
One of a group of two or more people charged in the same crime.
Law generally based upon court decisions or long standing practices, as opposed to law created by acts of legislatures.
Formal charge accusing a person of an offense.
The receipt by an individual of consideration in exchange for an agreement not to prosecute or inform on someone who they know has committed a crime.
Contempt of Court
An act committed which serves to obstruct the court in its administration or authority.
A delay or postponement of a court hearing.
A drug whose availability is restricted by law.
Guilty verdict in a criminal trial.
The court clerk offices which receive all court papers and assigns hearing dates.
A cause of action that may contain multiple counts or charges, each relating to the others but identifying a separate offense.
Court of Limited Jurisdiction
Court that has authority to adjudicate cases of a certain kind or up to a limited amount, usually lesser offenses.
Court of Record
The court where the permanent record of all proceedings is held.
Trial by a judge without jury.
Crimes Against Persons
Offenses where the victim is present and the act is violent, threatening or has the potential of being physically harmful.
Crimes Against Property
Offenses that involve taking something of value by theft or deception or the destruction of property.
An act that obstructs justice or attacks the integrity of the court.
The degree of blame or responsibility for a crime.
Money awarded to a person as compensation for loss or injury.
An object that is capable, though not designed to cause serious injury or death.
A new trial or one that is held for a second time, as if there had been no previous trial or decision.
A weapon designed to cause serious injury or death.
A person who has been formally charge with committing a specific crime.
Classifications assigned to a crime for purposes of determining punishment. First degree is usually considered most serious than third, and A is more serious than C. Degrees may be assigned to the actual crime (IE. murder in the first or second degree) or the class of crimes (IE. felony or misdemeanor).
The final settlement in the matter with a finding of guilt (conviction), innocence, or acquittal.
When a legal contract comes to an end.
Court having jurisdiction over a territorial district.
Diversity of Citizenship
A crime or claim which extends between citizens of different states. This is one of the grounds that can be used to invoke the jurisdiction of the U.S. Federal District Court.
A hold is placed with the Division of Motor Vehicles for all vehicles owned by the delinquent taxpayer and prevents the issuing of the State registration tags until all local taxes are paid.
A court's official record of proceedings and calendar of upcoming cases.
A reasonable and expected measure of attention taken for a particular action dependant on the situation.
Due Process of Law
Procedures followed by law enforcement and courts to insure the protection of an individual's rights as assigned by the Constitution.
A device placed on an offender to monitor their location and activities.
The process of legally dispossessing a person from land or rental property.
When a record of an offense is expunged, it is sealed or destroyed and will no longer appear on a released criminal history. Records are usually expunged in juvenile cases or upon satisfactory completion of a court-ordered probation.
The surrender of an individual accused or convicted of a crime by one state to another.
The body of law dealing with marriage, divorce, adoption, child custody and support, child abuse and neglect, paternity or other domestic issues.
Describing an offense that is done with malicious, villainous criminal intent.
A serious offense carrying a penalty of incarceration from one year to life in a state prison, to the death penalty.
Georgia 1st Offender Act
Upon fulfillment of the terms of probation or upon release from confinement, the defendant is discharged without court adjudication of guilt. The discharge shall completely exonerate the defendant of any criminal purpose and shall not affect any of their civil rights or liberties, and the defendant shall not be considered to have a criminal conviction.
A body of persons with the authority to investigate and accuse without trying cases. Grand juries listen to and review evidence to see if it there is sufficient grounds to bring an individual to trial.
A serious misdemeanor.
A proceeding where a prisoner challenged the lawfulness of their imprisonment.
Any crime involving bodily injury to any person in which the victim is intentionally selected because of the actual or perceived race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, ethnicity or disability of the victim.
A hung jury is one in which all jurors cannot reach a consensus required for a verdict.
Prohibited or unlawful.
One who is incapable of reform.
A formal, written accusation made by the grand jury.
Violation of local ordinance or state statute usually resulting in a fine or limited period of incarceration. The fines may usually be paid by mail without the person having to appear in court.
A court order which prohibits a person from doing a specified act for a specified period of time.
The frame of mind or attitude of the person at the time an act was committed.
The final decision of the court regarding a claim or case.
The power of a court to question facts, apply law, make decisions and judgments.
The determination of a case by a jury.
Lesser Included Offense
A less serious offense is committed during the perpetration of a greater crime and the lesser crime contains some of the same elements of the greater crime. The greater offense cannot be proven unless all of the elements of the lesser crime are proven.
Public officials including judicial officers who have limited jurisdiction in criminal cases and civil causes.
A crime that is less serious than a felony for which the punishment is usually imprisonment for one year or less.
A trial which is terminated or declared invalid. Reasons for mistrial include misconduct on the part of the jury, defense team or the court, or illness on the part of the judge, jury or defendant. May be followed by a retrial on the same charges.
A law or regulation of a city or local government.
A plea in which the defendant does not contest the charge. This has the same effect as a guilty plea except the conviction cannot be used against the defendant in a civil suit.
A No Contest plea in a criminal case has the legal effect of pleading guilty.
A municipal regulation.
Minor crimes or penalties which are generally punishable by a small fine or short jail term.
The party who first initiates litigation.
The defendant's formal answer to a charge.
A plea of guilt to a lesser offense in return for a lighter sentence.
A criminal hearing to determine is there is sufficient evidence to prosecute the accused.
Consciously deliberated and planned.
Usually conducted by a probation officer after a plea or verdict of guilt. Done before sentencing and includes information about the defendant's criminal history and personal background.
An extensive background check to help determine if charges will be pressed.
Reasonable suspicion that a person has committed a crime.
Attorneys who initiate and maintain a criminal action against the accused.
To return an individual to custody pending further trial or to return a case from an appellate to a lower court for further proceedings.
An alien who has temporary or permanent residence in a foreign country.
An order prohibiting a specified action until such time that a hearing on an application for an injunction can be held.
Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.
The process of officially restricting a file from general public access and limited access to law enforcement.
Search and Seizure
When authorities suspect that a crime has been committed and seize any relevant evidence to the crime.
Violation of Probation
A witness who is partial to one side and display bias through extreme readiness to volunteer information.
*The terms provided are general and should be used only as a guide for interpretation. Some criminal court jurisdictions may interpret some of the terms contained herein differently. This glossary should not be considered to be all-inclusive nor is it intended to constitute legal advice.
EBI’s Drug Testing Professionals have compiled a list of commonly used terms and definitions that appear in the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) rule, 49 CFR Part 40, which describes required procedures for conducting workplace drug and alcohol testing for the federally regulated transportation industry. This glossary should not be considered to be all-inclusive nor is it intended to constitute legal advice. It is especially important to consult legal counsel when making employment decisions.
Alcohol Concentration Test
Alcohol Screening Device
Alcohol Screening Test
Alcohol Testing Site
Blind Specimen or Blind Performance Test Specimen
Breath Alcohol Technician
Chain of Custody
Confirmation Drug Test
Confirmation Validity Test
Confirmed Drug Test
Consortium/Third Party Administrator
Designated Employer Representative
Error Correction Training
Evidential Breath Testing Device
Initial Drug Test
Initial Validity Test
Invalid Drug Test
Medical Review Officer
Office of Drug and Alcohol Policy and Compliance
Safety Sensitive Position
Screening Test Technician
Substance Abuse Professional
The U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) offers a variety of valuable resources for employers, immigrants and organizations. In addition to civic learning materials and naturalization process information, the USCIS provides comprehensive immigration law summaries and a complete glossary of terms with a variety of technical definitions. The glossary provided below can be utilized as a general reference guide:
Adjustment to Immigrant Status
Application Support Centers
Cancellation of Removal
Certificate of Citizenship
Country of Chargeability
Country of Citizenship
Deferred Inspection Parole
Geographic Area of Chargeability
Immigration Act of 1990
Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA)
Immigration and Nationality Act (INA)
Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR)
Permanent Resident Alien
Special Naturalization Provisions
Visa Waiver Program
All information contained herein is provided by Employment Background Investigations solely for the convenience of its clients. EBI is not providing legal advice or counsel and nothing provided on this document should be deemed as legal guidance or advice. Readers should consult with their own legal counsel to determine their legal responsibilities or if they have questions on any information provided by EBI.
Occupational Health Screening
We have comprised a list of commonly used terms and definitions that appear in the occupational healthcare arena. This glossary should not be considered to be all-inclusive nor is it intended to constitute legal advice. It is especially important to consult legal counsel when making employment decisions.
Biological Safety Level
Blood Borne Pathogens
Code of Safe Practices
Environmental Protection Agency
Established Federal Standard
The branch of medical science concerned with the causes and origins of diseases.