The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), Public Law No. 91-508, was enacted in 1970 to promote accuracy, fairness, and the privacy of personal information assembled by Credit Reporting Agencies (CRAs).CRAs assemble reports on individuals for businesses, including credit card companies, banks, employers, landlords, and others. The FCRA provides important protections for credit reports, consumer investigatory reports, and employment background checks. The FCRA is a complex statute that has been significantly altered since 1970 by Congress and the courts. The Act's primary protection requires that CRAs follow "reasonable procedures" to protect the confidentiality, accuracy, and relevance of credit information. To do so, the FCRA establishes a framework of Fair Information Practices for personal information that include rights of data quality (right to access and correct), data security, use limitations, requirements for data destruction, notice, user participation (consent), and accountability.
For more detailed information, please read the Fair Credit Reporting Act .
Permissible Purpose is your organization’s reason for conducting background checks. In most cases, this is for employment purposes. Under Section 604 of the Fair Credit Reporting Act, there are certain permissible purposes an organization must have before initiating a background screening program. The defined permissible purposes include, but are not limited to:
- Employment purposes
- The applicant’s written authorization
Disclosure and authorization is a required step under the Fair Credit Reporting Act. The Disclosure and Authorization form is the documentation used to obtain the candidate's prior authorization for the background check. Prior authorization is required before initiating a background check on any individual.
Pre-Adverse and Adverse Action letters give the candidate the opportunity to dispute information provided in their report that they believe is erroneous. These steps were designed to provide candidates protection from mistakes as a result of human error, mistaken identity, outdated information, etc.
Yes, the candidate has the right under the FCRA to obtain a free copy of their background screening report at their request. Accurate Background can provide report copies to your candidates upon request.
Disputes can be requested from our AccurateAce candidate dispute page. Accurate Background complies with all state and federal statutes regarding reporting and re-investigation of disputed information.
Although not required, the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) does state you must use the most current information possible and after 30 days any public records are considered out of date. At minimum, Accurate Background recommends running annual background checks to ensure nothing has occurred in the past year since the initial background check was conducted. If you are interested in conducting annual background checks, consult our Customer Service team for additional information regarding the recommended scope of the repeated background check.
Disputes can be requested from our AccurateNow candidate dispute page. Accurate Background complies with all state and federal statutes regarding reporting and re-investigation of disputed information.