Maryland Background Checks laws & HR compliance analysis

Maryland Background Checks: What you need to know

There are a number of ways for employers to gather information on the background of an applicant for employment. Employers may simply call an applicant's former employer to confirm the applicant's dates of employment and title and to try to obtain a more detailed reference from a supervisor. However, more and more frequently, employers are hiring third parties to conduct background checks on applicants who have been offered employment. In addition, depending on the nature of the position, employers are requesting reports about an applicant's driving record, criminal record, or credit history. There are often legal limits on employers obtaining and using this type of information. When employers hire a third party to conduct a background check or to obtain reports from outside agencies, such reports are subject to the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and state laws. In Maryland, employers must comply with laws concerning arrests and convictions, credit checks, criminal background checks, driver's record information, and background investigations.
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Employers may not in any application, interview, or otherwise require an applicant for employment to disclose information concerning criminal charges against the applicant that have been expunged. Employers may not discharge or refuse to hire a person solely for refusing to disclose information concerning criminal charges that have been expunged. Anyone violating this law is guilty of a misdemeanor and, on conviction, may face a fine of up to $1,000 or imprisonment for up to 1 year, or both, for each violation. In addition, a state official or employee who violates this rule may be removed or dismissed from public ...

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