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More Restrictions on Criminal Background Checks

California appears to be the latest state to join the criminal-background-restriction bandwagon. A new law enacted last month amends the California Labor Code to prohibit public and private employers from asking job applicants about criminal records that have been expunged, sealed or dismissed. “The good news is that [the law] doesn’t break entirely new ground, but instead modifies existing law,” says Brian Inamine, a LeClairRyan labor and employment attorney. “The bad news is that it represents one more hurdle that businesses have to contend with.” To date, 43 cities, counties and municipalities, and 10 states have passed “ban the box” legislation for public-only or public and private employers, making questions about criminal convictions on job applications illegal.

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