Screening News Weekly Wrap: November 22nd, 2019

Screening News Weekly Wrap: November 22nd, 2019

By Tricia O'Connor

Fact checking is a huge component of background screening. Whether you’re the business owner or the employee, it’s important to verify the information included in a background check report. EBI knows quality matters and we’re proud to share we have nearly perfect accuracy.

But as this week’s EBI Screening News Weekly Wrap presented by Jennifer Gladstone shows us, when you don’t double-check the facts things can go wrong – quickly. And the implications can be disastrous.

Please note there will be no Screening News Updates during the week of November 24th and the EBI offices will be closed Thursday and Friday for Thanksgiving with our families. 

No Signature? No Problem. PA Law Requires E-Verify

President Donald Trump has been slowly overhauling U.S. immigration law during his first term. One of the key tools under consideration is making E-Verify mandatory. E-Verify is a federal system used to authenticate a person’s Social Security Number and ensure they are eligible to work in the United States.

Certain industries like construction rely on E-Verify more than other industries. So, recent legislation passed in Arizona and Pennsylvania targeted at construction companies is being watched closely by construction industry insiders, as well as screening industry insiders.

The newest law passed in Pennsylvania did so without the governors’ signature. Starting October 2020, construction companies will be required to use E-Verify to check the employment eligibility of every new hire. The Construction Industry Employee Verification Act passed both chambers of the state General Assembly. When that happens, the governor has 10 days to sign or veto the bill. If he doesn’t, the measure automatically becomes law.

Previously, only companies holding state contracts were required to use the federal verifications system.

Much like their Arizona counterparts, co-sponsors of the Pennsylvania bill say it will prevent unscrupulous employers from hurting competition and driving down wages by hiring illegal immigrants. Employers who violate the law will be forced to fire unauthorized employees and will be put on probation for three years.

E-Verify is the second step of a two-step employment verification process. Completing the Form I-9 is the first step. This form confirms a new hire is either a U.S. citizen or is in the country legally and has proof they’re allowed to work. However, as EBI has heard from our clients countless times, completing the Form I-9 can be a headache. So, we drafted The Form I-9: The Definitive Guide for HR Professionals. This guide should help clear up any confusion.

Bad Background Check Drives Woman to File Lawsuit

We’ve heard of a case of mistaken identity before, but having it happen twice in two years is lazy at best and negligent at worst.

Theresa Jones from Tampa, Florida was mistaken TWO times for a Pennsylvania woman with the same name and birthday. The bad background checks happened while Jones was working as a driver for ride-hailing service, Lyft. Jones is now suing Lyft and the company that conducts its background checks for a mix-up that ultimately cost her a job.

The first time the faulty results turned up was in 2017. Jones went to the police and submitted fingerprints to prove she was not the woman charged with “disorderly conduct engaging in a fight.” Yet the mismatch happened again just two years later.

Since she was not allowed to drive for three weeks while clearing her name, Jones says she lost her home, her car, and custody of her children because of her lack of income.

The lawsuit accuses Lyft and their screening company of violating the Fair Credit Reporting Act because they took adverse action against Jones without giving her time to correct the mistake. Adverse action is the series of steps an employer must take if they decide to not hire, promote, or fire someone based on negative information in their background check report. When a person identifies a mistake in their background report, adverse action guarantees that person’s right to dispute that information.

Need a refresher on adverse action after reading this story? We thought you might. Click here for a comprehensive guide.

ICYMI: EBI is now a partner of LinkedIn Talent Hub, allowing clients to source, manage, and hire in one integrated platform. Read more about the benefits of this integrated solution.

Warning: CBD Product Labels a Smokescreen?

We’ve been trained to read product labels for nutrition reasons for years, but cannabis users may need to pay close attention to the labels on CBD products after reading this story.

An Illinois truck driver failed a drug test and lost his job after eating a cannabis gummy candy to help him sleep. Trevor Darrow says he specifically chose the Just CBD brand because the candy had a label that read “No THC”, but just two weeks later he failed a drug test for the first time in his life. He’d been a truck driver for 10 years.

Darrow has now filed a lawsuit against Just Brands USA. The class action is open to anyone who bought Just CBD products with the “No THC” label in the past three years. THC is the compound marijuana drug tests are typically aimed at detecting. Darrow’s lawyer says there needs to be federal labeling on CBD products (like all food products have) to inform and protect consumers.

Nina French, Managing Partner for the Current Consulting Group with over 25 years of experience in employee screening, told the Screening News Weekly Wrap earlier this year the CBD market and marijuana industries have managed to avoid the same safety measures required of the alcohol industry.

French says the products are largely untested and their production is unsupervised, which means many of them could easily contain THC. French will have more on the CBD issue in an upcoming Ask an Expert segment, premiering in 2020.

Have a question for Nina? Here’s your chance. Send your background screening question to “Ask an Expert.” We might feature it in an upcoming segment!


Compliance I-9 & E-Verify Screening News Network

About the Author

Tricia O'Connor

Tricia O'Connor

Writer. Digital marketer. Storyteller. An award-winning writer and editor, Tricia O'Connor is the Marketing Content Manager at EBI. Tricia worked as a broadcast and print journalist for nearly two decades writing and producing programming for high-profile networks like ESPN Radio, History Channel, and Hallmark Channel, as well as contributing editorial work to publications nationwide. Tricia joined the EBI marketing team in 2019 and is responsible for content strategy, development, and engagement. Tricia earned a master's degree in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University and is a proud undergraduate alumna of Wheaton College in Massachusetts.

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