Greetings from Atlanta!

Today is the beginning of the rest of my life and the adventure continues with a new location in Alpharetta, GA. I am very happy to be starting this new chapter and to be neighbors with my children. It feels great to be around family.

On the business side of things we are trying to get settled in, but as you would expect things are a bit chaotic. I am optimistic that this too will pass.

We now have two great ways for CRAs to reach out to the HR community.

First, there is our industry leading 2015-16 Annual Background Screening Industry Resource Guide which we will launch at the SHRM Annual Conference in June in Las Vegas. This year we will be distributing the Guide to 30,000 HR Managers (up from 20,000 in 2014.) Take advantage of this great opportunity to reach HR decision makers in the only Resource Guide printed exclusively for the background screening industry. Click here to read about and reserve your advertising space or contribute a sponsored article.

Second, we have just launched our new HR eDirect Mail Service which will make available to you more than 200,000 HR Managers. We are selling our HR email list on a state by state basis. Click here to read about the service. Email me at to try out a complimentary sample of up to 100 HR email contacts.

Also for those of you who are interested in knowing what is happening in the dynamic world of international background screening we have launched our newest newsletter - The Global Background Screener. Click here to see the most recent edition.

As we now start to operate out of the Alpharetta based office I want to pause and thank each of you for your support and patronage. Our location has changed, but our commitment remains steadfast to continue to provide the background screening industry with high quality publications, information, resources and services to help your business thrive.

I hope you have a fabulous day and that God's blessings go with you.

P.S. Y'all come back and see me you here.



Employment Screening News
Legal Issues
Alcohol & Drug Screening
Data Protection & Privacy
Public Record Update
eVerify & Immigration Issues
Inside Washington


United Kingdom





The Bruce Berg Report on the 2015 NAPBS Mid-Year Legislative and Regulatory Conference

Forty exhibitors supported NAPBS this year, similar to the same sold-out number as the last mid-year. Attendance was up from last year's 285 to 341. Last year we had 45 going up on the hill on Advocacy Day and this year we had 55.

Business is up very nicely for most during Q1. While the unemployment rate is no longer falling, there is still turnover and we are needed. CRAs are continually looking for new products/services to add to their product line.

NAPBS has changed representation/lobbying law firms to Akin Gump to take advantage of their strong national level footprint and presence at the State level. We need early warnings on state legislation to try to head off any surprises that might negatively impact our industry. Akin Gump presented a comprehensive status report of their efforts.

The session topics covered a wide spectrum of subjects relevant to the industry. If you missed a session or the conference you can go here to see the conference presentations on the NAPBS website.

Key conference point
You know what adverse information is. You know what adverse action is, but how do you handle contemporaneous notification that a public record was found and reported, even if the public record shows clear? How are you handling this notice to the applicant? Think you have to do nothing if it's a clear? You might want to stay in close touch with your FCRA attorney and continuing guidance from NAPBS on this subject.

It still seems a bit amazing to me how all these competitors get together and build a strong organization, share friendship, help solve problems and get along so well. NAPBS has a great spirit all based on common challenges and finding the best solutions.

"Once a Criminal, Always a Criminal" - Why We Need to Believe in Second Chances

Many employers are hesitant to hire people with criminal records, and law from hiring them prohibits some. There is also the very real fear of the legal ramifications of hiring an ex-offender. Businesses are often held liable for the actions of their employees. Negligent hiring lawsuits are not uncommon. I believe a blanket decision to never hire anyone with a criminal past is unnecessary. We as employers and Background Check companies need to move past the notion that "Once a Criminal, Always a Criminal". When doing a criminal background check, an employer's goal should be to look for a pattern of behavior, not one mistake.

Same Time Next Year

Does your company participate in the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework? It's a voluntary international privacy program administered by the Department of Commerce that lets companies transfer data from the EU to the U.S. in compliance with EU law. To participate in the Safe Harbor Framework, the first step is for a company to certify that it abides by seven principles: notice, choice, onward transfer, security, data integrity, access, and enforcement. But the obligation doesn't end there. A company also has to annually reaffirm that it's still in compliance. That's why saying you have a valid Safe Harbor certification - but failing to self-certify once a year - is a deceptive practice, in violation of the FTC Act.

Montana to Join Growing List of States Limiting Access to Social Media?

Legislators in Montana gave final approval to H.B. 342, which would limit an employer's ability to access the personal social media accounts of applicants and employees. The bill now goes to Governor Steve Bullock's office. If signed, Montana would become the most recent state to join the list of 19 states, which limit an employer's access to personal social media accounts. Notably, the proposed Montana law would permit employers to request login credentials when the employer has specific information about the employee's activity that indicates work-related employee misconduct, criminal defamation or the unauthorized transfer by the employee of the employer's proprietary or confidential information, trade secrets, financial data.

FTC Settles with Two Companies Falsely Claiming to Comply with International Safe Harbor Privacy Framework

Two U.S. businesses have agreed to settle FTC charges they falsely claimed they were abiding by an international privacy framework known as the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor, which enables U.S. companies to transfer consumer data from the EU to the US in compliance with EU law. FTC complaints against TES Franchising, LLC, and American International Mailing, Inc. allege that the companies' websites indicated they were currently certified under the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework and U.S.-Swiss Safe Harbor Framework, when in fact their certifications had lapsed years earlier. "These cases send an important message that businesses must not deceive consumers about whether they hold these certifications, and by extension, the ways in which they protect consumers," said FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez.

C:\Users\Barry\AppData\Local\Temp\wz38b1\BackgroundBuzz Ad_v3.png




Federal Judge in California Brings Down the Curtain on a FCRA Class Action Against Paramount Pictures

Class actions alleging technical violations of the FCRA against employers who obtain consumer reports on job applicants are all the rage, generating large settlements and headlines. Perhaps bucking this trend, a federal judge in California recently dismissed a putative class action case in its infancy against Paramount Pictures Corporation. The plaintiff, Michael Peikoff, alleges Paramount breached the FCRA by procuring a consumer report without making the required disclosure. The court found that even if Paramount's disclosure did not strictly comport with FCRA's requirement, "it is not plausible that Paramount acted in reckless disregard of the requirements of the FCRA by using this language." The court granted Paramount's motion, and dismissed Peikoff's complaint with prejudice.

It May Not be a Matter of 'If,' but 'When' for Private Employers in the Commonwealth - Virginia 'Bans the Box' for Many State Employment Applications

Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe has issued Executive Order #41, thereby adding Virginia to the growing list of jurisdictions (including California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, Rhode Island, Washington, D.C., and more than 100 cities and counties) that have "banned the box" and excluded and/or limited the use of criminal background checks in hiring for certain jobs. While Executive Order #41 does not currently impact private employers, Virginia employers should begin evaluating whether the use of criminal background information for employment purposes is appropriate for their organizations, including whether the benefits of such practices are worth the risks in the current political environment.

Major FERPA Overhaul Under Consideration in U.S. House

A proposed overhaul of the country's primary law protecting student-data privacy is being circulated for feedback, offering yet another sign of the federal government's interest in reshaping the legislative landscape around this hot-button issue. The "discussion draft" of a bill that would rewrite the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, or FERPA, was released by the bipartisan leadership of the Education & the Workforce Committee of the U.S. House. The bill is intended as a potential complement to-not replacement for-the pending Student Digital Privacy and Parental Rights Act, championed by the White House.

New Illinois Laws in 2015: What Employers Should Know

Joining the current "Ban the Box" trend, the Job Opportunities for Qualified Applicants Act prohibits Illinois employers from asking job applicants about their criminal history until after the employer determines that the individual is qualified for the position and notifies the individual that s/he has been selected for an interview. If an employer does not conduct interviews, then any inquiry into an applicant's criminal background cannot take place until after the employer makes a conditional offer of employment. In light of this new legislation, Illinois employers with multi-state locations or branches should review any "national" or uniform job applications, especially those completed via the Internet.

Texas a Hot Bed for Legislative Action Addressing the Background Screening Industry

  • S.B. 1874, The Modern Electronic Records in Texas Act ("MERIT Act"), introduced by Sen. John Whitmire (D-Houston) will be heard on Tuesday, April 28 in the Senate Committee on Criminal Justice which Whitmire chairs. The bill would, among other things, prohibit bulk transfer of criminal records databases and prohibit the purchase and sale of nonconviction records. NAPBS will have witnesses at the hearing and will be working with allies to oppose this bill.
  • TX S.B. 1960 / H.B. 2700 introduced by Sen. Chuy Hinosa (D-McAllen) and Rep. Senfronia Thompson (D-Houston) would limit bulk access to certain local criminal repositories. We are working with other stakeholders on alternative language.
  • TX S.B. 128 introduced by Sen. Royce West (D-Houston) seeks to prevent the dissemination of criminal record information for employment, housing and other purposes unless that information has been verified first. The bill has several other components for reporting criminal record information that add significant complexity. It is currently pending in the Senate Committee on Criminal Justice. NAPBS continues to monitor action on this bill closely and expects to call upon members for assistance.
  • TX H.B. 4114 introduced by Rep. Ruth Jones McClendon (D-San Antonio) would impose a series of onerous requirements on businesses that publish, republish or otherwise disseminate criminal record information and arrest photographs, including attesting to the accuracy of the information and notifying the individual whose criminal record information is being published, among others. This bill was heard in the House Committee on Business and Industry on April 21 and was left pending before the Committee. We will be working with stakeholders and the bill sponsor to provide substitute language.
  • TX H.B. 1118 introduced by Rep. Mike Schofield (R-Houston) would allow state agencies to deny public record requests from out of state individuals or businesses. The bill was heard on April 22 in the House Committee on Government Transparency and Operation Committee where it was left pending. We will continue to actively monitor this bill for any indication of further consideration.

The above information appeared in a recent alert issued by NAPBS with a call to action for background screening firms in Texas to contact their legislators to weigh in on these bills which could have a detrimental impact on the industry.

For more information contact NAPBS's Government Relations Committee Chairpersons:
Jay Harris, and Cathy Klafehn,

Virginia Limits Employer Access to Social Media Accounts of Employees and Applicants

Effective July 1, 2015, employers in Virginia will be prohibited from requiring, requesting, or causing a current or prospective employee to disclose the username and password to the individual's social media account. The new law also prohibits employers from requiring an employee to add another employee, a supervisor, or an administrator to the list or contacts associated with the individual's social media account or changing the privacy settings. An employer taking or threatening to discharge, discipline, or otherwise penalize any employee in retaliation for his or her refusal to comply with a request or demand that violates the new law is in violation of the law. Failing or refusing to hire a prospective employee for exercising his statutory rights also is a violation.

California District Court Holds that LinkedIn's "Reference Searches" Function Not a Consumer Report Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act

A judge recently handed down an important decision regarding the application of the FCRA to one of LinkedIn's search products. The decision comes amidst a fluid legal landscape for employers and consumer reporting agencies trying to remain in compliance with the FCRA and provides another example of a court grappling with how to reconcile new technologies with existing statutes. The central dispute was whether "Reference Searches" fit within the FCRA's definition of "consumer report." If so, LinkedIn may have been on the hook for failing to comply with the FCRA's disclosure, authorization and other requirements. But the judge sided with LinkedIn, concluding that reference searches are not consumer reports under the FCRA.

Lawsuit Claims Background Check Error Ruined Reputation

A Minnesota mother blames a background check mistake for ruining her reputation. The company that did Wosmek's background check for the school district that she volunteered for said she'd committed criminal vehicular homicide. She says the company not only got it wrong but district employees spread the information for five months. "If I had gotten a letter at that point and been notified, I could have stopped it right then and there," Wosmek said. One study found 600,000 Americans are denied a job each year based on a bad background check. Wosmek is now suing the school district and the background check company that made the mistake.

City Will Ban Employers From Viewing Credit History of Prospective Workers

The City Council is expected to pass a bill that will make it illegal for employers to check job-seekers' credit history. In addition to banning credit reports on a prospective employee, the bill also prohibits employers from asking people what their credit score is in job interviews. "There's just no demonstrated correlation between credit history and job performance, or the likelihood to commit fraud or theft," said the bill's sponsor, City Councilman Brad Lander. Lander said it was decided to exempt only a handful of employers - like law enforcement and positions that could pose cybersecurity threats.


As the background screening industry continues to get more competitive the firms that will ultimately succeed will be those that create competitive advantage through their people by offering continuous learning opportunities to heightened their knowledge and capabilities. We believe that having employees that are very knowledgeable about the legal landscape of background screening is essential to continued success.


We are grateful to Larry D. Henry who began his law career with the Army JAGC where he tried over 2,000 cases. After the Army he relocated to Tulsa. In 1981, the founder of DAC Services contacted Mr. Henry's firm for assistance in creating a background screening company. Since Mr. Henry's practice was employment law, the firm believed this fell within his area and as they say: "the rest is history". His practice has kept him in continual contact with the background screening industry, and he is a nationally recognized expert in the area of background screening.

Mr. Henry's practice is concentrated on employment law and in specific, background screening of employees. He represents consumer reporting agencies throughout the United States and two national trade associations. He is the author of the Criminal Records Manual and the on line reference, and he is a frequent presenter across the country on various topics dealing with background screening.

Question: CRA, Inc. has a new client, ABC, Inc., that wants to know if it can charge employee for the costs associated with running a background check. What should you tell ABC?

a. Yes, this cost can always be passed on to the employee.

b. Yes, if the employee agrees to cover the cost prior to running the background check.

c. Your answer will depend on what state law applies.

d. No, the FCRA prohibits costs being passed on to the employee.

LEGAL ISSUES continued

Class Action Lawsuit against Major National Online Retailer Underscores Need to Comply with the FCRA

In a class action lawsuit filed in federal court, Amazon and a staffing firm that provides workers have been sued in a class action lawsuit alleging that the defendants failed to comply with the adverse action notice requirements of the FCRA where employment was denied due to a past criminal matter. The case raises important considerations when it comes to employers that work with staffing vendors. In this lawsuit, even though it was the staffing firm that allegedly failed to provide the required notice process, the case is also aimed at Amazon, which is the company where the applicant would be placed and would likely be working under the direction and control of Amazon. It underscores the need for employers to work carefully with staffing providers to ensure that the FCRA requirements are being followed.

Source: Employment Screening Resources,

Felons Barred From Constructing Apple's Campus

Apple is known for being secretive and picky about who works on its popular devices, but now, union officials say, that thinking also applies to the construction workers. Several construction workers who were hired to build the exterior of Apple's new campus were ordered to leave the site due to prior felony convictions. The ban is unusual for construction work, a field in which employers typically do not perform criminal background checks. "Apple is always nervous about preserving its proprietary information, and yet I don't know how this would affect that concern," said Michael Theriault, president of Iron Workers Local Union 377. Banning felons could bring about legal ramifications for Apple, said law professor, Lisa Klerman.


Medical Marijuana Extracts Approved in Georgia

Georgia became the 36th state, plus Washington, D.C., to legalize marijuana extracts to treat illnesses. Gov. Nathan Deal signed the "Haleigh's Hope Act," which immediately legalized the use of medical marijuana to treat eight serious medical conditions (the law does not permit the smoking of marijuana.) The law specifically allows employers to refuse to "accommodate" an employee's use of medical cannabis oil. It also allows employers to take adverse action against both on-duty and off-duty users of medical cannabis under a drug policy. Marijuana is still an illegal drug under federal law. However, medical marijuana users may be protected under state or local disability discrimination, or "lawful products," laws.

Growing Number of Workers Abusing Stimulants to Stay Competitive

A growing number of workers in a wide variety of professions are abusing stimulants in an effort to stay competitive, experts tell The New York Times. Abuse of stimulants to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), such as Adderall, has long been an issue for college students. A recent analysis estimated that 17% of college students misuse ADHD drugs. There are no reliable estimates of how many American workers misuse stimulants, but dozens of people interviewed by newspaper said they and co-workers misused stimulants. These drugs, when taken in high doses, can cause anxiety, addiction and hallucinations. Some doctors and medical ethicists are concerned there is pressure in some workplaces to use stimulants in an attempt to become more productive.

Failure to Disclose "Shy Bladder Syndrome" to Employer Defeats ADA Claims Over Firing for Refusal to Drug Test

A retail employee in line for a store general manager's position lost not only the promotion, but his job, as well, when he failed or refused to take a test because he could not provide a urine specimen as a result of "shy bladder syndrome." The syndrome, or paruresis, makes it difficult for the individual to urinate in public restrooms. A federal district court in Ohio rejected the discharged employee's ADA claim and granted summary judgment for the employer, concluding that even if the employee's condition was protected by the ADA, he had not shown that he had ever made the Company aware of it prior to his dismissal, or had asked for an accommodation.


Data Privacy Challenges & Considerations for Cross-Border Ethics & Compliance Investigations

Investigations of potential misconduct can be taxing for any organization. But for organizations operating in multiple countries, the variability of data privacy laws around the globe present a special challenge. The stakes are high: if investigators violate data privacy laws, not only do they expose their organization to reputational damage and sanctions, but individuals can also be held personally liable and criminally prosecuted. Unfortunately, there is no simple solution to the complex challenges of cross border investigations. Data privacy laws across countries differ too greatly for there to be a one-size-fits-all, easy fix.



C:\WBN Documents\WV\WV\Product Lines\Pre-Employment\Product Lines\Background Buzz\Volume 121- Dec\Ads\Rapidcourt 102314-caffeine-bgbuzz.jpg

Public Record Update
By Mike Sankey, PRRN

Maine Court Records: More Changes

Criminal Record Search Fee Increases in MO and MT

Effective March 1, 2015, the fee increased by $1.50 for name-based criminal record background checks obtained from the Montana Department of Justice - Criminal Records and Identification Services Section increased by $1.50. The fee is now $11.50 per individual for a name check or state fingerprint check, and $13.00 for name check online.

Effective March 1, 2015, the Missouri State Highway Patrol, Criminal Justice Information Services Division, implemented a $1.00 fee increase for a name-based criminal record check. The revised fee for a name-based search is now $12.00 for each inquiry by mail or online. The online automated system (MACHS) is also $12.00, but a convenience fee is added.

The Public Record Research System - PRRS

PRRS is the ultimate public record resource! Subscribers have in seconds all the essential information about how to access public records directly from 26,000+ government agencies and institutions at the county, state and federal levels. Subscriber know all access methods (including if online), indexing and search requirements, restrictions, and fees. The Courts Section informs you when online searching is or is not equivalent to onsite research for most courts. PRRS consists of 7 individual BRB databases. Subscriptions are also offered on an ala carte basis.

More Info


Public Record Retriever Network -
The CRA Help Desk -
Motor Vehicle Record Decoder -
BRB's Public Record Blog -

BRB's Bookstore -



Innovative Enterprises Court Research Team Achieves Industry Certification

Innovative Enterprises, Inc., a strategic partner to the background screening industry and expert provider of court research information products, smart data solutions and ancillary services, today announced that 100% of its in-house court research team has achieved NAPBS® FCRA Basic Certification.

Innovative Enterprises is strongly committed to providing the very best suite of screening solutions, backed by the industry's leading professionals, to the Consumer Reporting Agencies and other professional screeners who rely upon them on a daily basis to build safer workplaces and communities. In achieving NAPBS® FCRA Basic Certification, Innovative's court research team has demonstrated its commitment to navigating the increasingly complex laws that impact the background screening profession and to delivering the standard of excellence that professional screeners have come to expect from Innovative.

"I am extremely proud of our research team, led by our Operations Manager, Sierra Hauser, who accepted my challenge to achieve NAPBS® Basic FCRA Certification in advance of the 2015 NAPBS® Mid-Year Legislative and Regulatory Conference," stated Dean Carras, Innovative's Vice President and Chief Compliance Officer. "Our strength is in our people, and every investment we make in ourselves is ultimately an investment in our customers and in those who rely upon them to make mission critical risk management decisions."

Several members of the Innovative research team will travel to Washington, DC later this week to complete the FCRA Advanced Certification Program being offered at the NAPBS® Mid-Year Legislative and Regulatory Conference.

For more information, please call 1-888-777-9435, email, or visit us online at


Kevin Coy is a Partner in the Washington DC office of Arnall Golden Gregory LLP. Kevin
advises background screening companies and other clients on a wide range of privacy and consumer regulatory issues, including Fair Credit Reporting Act, Gramm Leach Bliley Act,
Drivers' Privacy Protection Act, and Dodd Frank Act compliance issues, as well as data breach matters. Kevin also represents clients with matters before the Federal Trade Commission, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and other consumer protection agencies.

Kevin can be contacted at or 202-677-4034.


April 2015

At the Supreme Court

On April 27 the United States Supreme Court granted certiorari in Spokeo, Inc. v. Robins, setting the stage for the high court to resolve a critical standing question: namely, whether Congress may confer Article III standing on plaintiffs that do not suffer concrete and tangible harms, and therefore would otherwise not be able to invoke federal court jurisdiction, by authorizing a private right of action based on a statutory violation of federal law. The Supreme Court's decision to grant certiorari in Spokeo is significant.

At the EEOC

On April 21st, Freeman, the company won its long running battle with the EEOC over EEOC allegations that the company violated Title VII by engaging in background check practices that had a disparate impact on African-Americans and males, launched something of a counterattack against the Agency, requesting that a federal court award the Freeman nearly $1.7 million in attorneys' fees and expert witness fees that the company incurred defending itself in the case.

At the FTC

On April 15, the FTC issued its 2014 Annual Highlights report. Among the highlights cited by the FTC were its actions against Instant Checkmate, Inc. and InfoTrack Information Services, Inc. which, according to the FTC report "settled charges that they violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act by providing reports about consumers to users, such as prospective employers and landlords, without taking reasonable steps to make sure that they were accurate, or without making sure their users had a permissible reason to have them."

On April 13th, Maneesha Mithal, Associate Director of the Division of Privacy and Identity Protection in the FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection, spoke at the National Association of Professional Background Screeners Mid-year conference in Washington DC. Ms. Mithal addressed a number of issues of interest to background screeners share some key tips for consumer reporting agencies:On April 2, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued a new brochure for job applicants and employees and reminded employers of its joint guidance with the EEOC on the conduct of background checks. The two publications are available from the FTC website.

Read the full report

Welcome to the eVerify Challenge Question!





Welcome to the eVerify Challenge Question! A. Kersey
Managing Director, Kersey Immigration Compliance, LLC

Nicole A. ("Nici") Kersey is an attorney whose practice is dedicated to employment-based immigration, with a focus on the Form I-9, E-Verify, and related immigration compliance issues. Nici represents employers before, during, and after Form I-9 inspections by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), providing practical advice to and serving as an advocate for employers during negotiations and litigation relating to fines for I-9 violations. She is a frequent trainer and speaker on I-9 and E-Verify issues. Nici is a graduate of the University of Virginia School of Law and provides pro bono representation to the spouses of U.S. soldiers and to arts organizations.

The Challenge Question:

Can I require that my employees provide an e-mail address in Section 1 of the Form I-9?
The new Form I-9 has an e-mail address field in Section 1, and I understand that it may be used by the Department of Homeland Security to notify an employee of a Tentative Nonconfirmation (and to provide relevant updates) in E-Verify. Can I require that my employees complete this field so that they receive these updates?

A. Yes. I-9 regulations state that all employers must require employees to complete this field.

B. Yes. The field is optional, but it is up to the employer to decide whether employees must provide the e-mail address.

C. No. It is an optional field, and it is up to the employee whether to provide an e-mail address.

D. No. Only E-Verify users may require e-mail addresses.


The Long Arm of E-Verify Monitoring and Compliance

The latest and greatest E-Verify enhancements for FY2015, include enhanced "data analytics" which enable DHS to closely monitor and prevent potential misuse. Many HR Managers were oblivious to DHS' Monitoring and Compliance (M&C) branch, and all of the associated (scary) audit E-Verify system. Shortly after implementation began the comments were heard from unsuspecting HR managers:

"I thought there was no enforcement with E-Verify. That's why I signed up."

"What happens if I make a few mistakes? Will I then be subjected to an audit?"

"How many audits have they conducted, and how have they turned out?

And like clockwork, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) just published a new report which sheds some light on M&C's recent compliance activity during the past few years and the potential consequences of misusing the system. Have you been contacted by the E-Verify M&C unit and wondered why? Are you concerned about the potential repercussions? Read-on to learn all about this "silent" E-Verify enforcement tool and what it may mean for your organization.



Grab a latte and pull up a chair and join us for a great interview with Sarah Price, Vice President, Priority Backgrounds.

Prior to coming into the background screening industry Sarah worked for a major legal publication in the marketing and advertising division. She left there to help the Triangle United Way, taking corporate groups on tours of the nonprofits that benefited from their annual campaigns.

Sarah smiled as she shared she took some time off to raise her two girls.

Once she rejoined the workforce she spent 10 years establishing their legal division, CourtLogic, as the premier provider of real time NC court data for lawyers and private investigators in North Carolina, we realized there was a need for accurate, timely NC court records in the screening industry. In 2005 we started Priority Backgrounds division to relieve screening companies of the stress of constant AOC and expungment law changes in North Carolina.

She noted that one of the things she likes about the industry is that there are some wonderful people she has met and many of her business relationships have turned into strong friendships. She looks forward to seeing everyone each year at various conferences. Sarah exclaimed "Who says you can't be successful while having a great time? The folks in this industry have mastered that concept."

Changing the conversation to her company she said "We have been retrieving data from the NC court system for 15 years. We are experts in retrieving and interpreting NC court records and are always here to help answer questions regarding clerk's codes, abbreviations, etc. We follow proposed law changes that affect the screening industry and pride ourselves on excellent customer service.

She added "Our customers will tell you we pride ourselves on customer service. If they ever have a question about a case disposition, clerk's abbreviation, etc. they know they can call or email me and I will take the time to research for them, calling the clerk directly to get an answer if necessary.

On the personal side Sarah shared that a close friend recently went to a used book sale and bought books for all of her girlfriends. "Her choice for me was "Dandelion," a true story about a woman growing up in the 1960's who dated some very famous rock musicians. It's an interesting read so far…"

Before ending the interview Sarah shared her favorite quote, "If ignorance is bliss, why aren't more people happy?" -Thomas Jefferson.

For more information about Priority Backgrounds or to talk with Sarah she can be reached at 800-792-4339 or online at


We can help you have a high quality e-newsletter to help nurture your relationship with your clients and attract new clients. Our customized newsletter service will take over your newsletter task or create a new one for you. We can manage the creation of your newsletter for you.

We are constantly researching information to use for The Background Buzz and you can put our research to use for you. Using the information rich content from The Background Buzz (minus the ads and competitors information) we will create a custom newsletter for you.

Use your staff’s time to do more valuable work and save all the hassle of researching or writing articles, formatting and managing all the other ezine tasks with our customized ezine process.

Contact Barry Nixon at 949-770-5264 or at for more information.




Termination of Employment for Failing Random Drug Test Upheld

Where safety is a critical component of an employee's duties, employers' drug and alcohol policies are more likely to be enforceable. The Full Bench of the Fair Work Commission recently upheld the termination of employment of an employee who returned a positive test for cannabis in a random drug test. Employer policies, which provide for disciplinary action including dismissal where an employee tests positive for cannabis may, at least in the context of safety critical work, be judged to be lawful and reasonable. Make sure your drug and alcohol policy expressly states that disciplinary action including dismissal will be taken where an employee fails to comply.


A Sniff Too Far? Arbitrator Rules Employer Cannot Conduct Random Drug Searches Using Drug Sniffing Dogs

An arbitrator was required to determine whether Agrium Vanscoy Potash Operations could require employees to submit to a search from a drug sniffing dog before they could enter the potash mine. The Union grieved against this policy, alleging that requiring all employees to submit to the random search process was "an unjustifiable violation of employees' fundamental right of 'privacy'." The arbitrator concluded that a drug sniffing dog is a search that could interfere with an employee's informational privacy and that Agrium did not have reasonable grounds. Employers will need specific evidence of a substance abuse problem before they can require employees to submit to drug searches or testing, even minimally invasive searches by drug sniffing dogs.


Fraud Case Highlights Recruitment Risks

Employers are too trusting during the recruitment process and shouldn't take information at face value, says The Risk Advisory Group. This warning follows the news that a woman stole £17,000 from her employer after hiding a previous workplace fraud. The case's judge noted that she had kept this information to herself during the recruitment process but The Risk Advisory Group says that deception on behalf of an employer is not an excuse for hiring a rogue candidate. "It's no surprise that job candidates will aim to hide details they'd prefer a potential employer not to know about," said Michael Whittington, head of employee screening. "But it's a two-way process. Employers need to be aware of these vulnerabilities when putting people into positions of trust and conduct thorough background checks."

Disruptive Hiring: Onfido's Technology Checks Out With Top Investors

Global companies are increasingly reliant on the services of on-demand contractors. They need to hire fast, but are often held up by background checking processes that are bureaucratic, slow and expensive to use. So, disruptive technology that renders cumbersome processes obsolete will naturally attract the business of clients, and for the entrepreneurs behind the technology, the attention and the cash of heavyweight investors from the worlds of technology, HR and the sharing economy. That is exactly what Onfido, a tech startup has just done. Onfido's technology allows the thousands of companies to carry out global, remote verification on the workers that use their platforms. It can run background checks on everything from identity checks to criminal checks, overhauling the cumbersome paper-based process.

Child Safeguarding Rules Force Recruiters to Check All Candidates' Compliance

Guidance around working with young children has seen recruiters change how they recruit and screen candidates, in some cases going through thousands of people on their books to check compliance. The Department for Education published guidance announcing 'disqualification by association' late last year and updated in February this year. This effectively bars people from working with children under the age of eight if they live or work in the same household as someone who is disqualified from working with young children. Lauren Thompson, Classpeople's compliance officer, said the disqualification by association requirement relies on self-disclosure, which means recruiters must ask candidates to provide information about someone who lives or works in their household.


Background Screening Jobs

Visit the Job Board for the Employment and Tenant Screening Industry. Here you will find resumes of people with industry experience and employers seeking applicants with experience in Employment and Tenant Screening and related businesses.


Feature Education:

FCRA Basic Certification Webinar Series Update

The FCRA Basic Certification program series is now available for purchase.

For more information

2015 Events ( Click Here to View full list of Events ) - Updated Monthly

SHRM State Conferences, visit

Drug and Alcohol Testing Industry Association (DATIA), 2013 Training Course Schedule, visit

SAPAA Training Institute Learning Events,

CUPA-HR Conferences:

World Federation of People Management Associations, Events,


The Background Buzz is a service of, the premier listing of Preemployment Background Screening companies on the Internet for employers to search for a firm to meet their preemployment background checking needs. The Background Buzz is published by the National Institute for the Prevention of Workplace Violence, Inc. All logos highlighted in 'New Featured Clients' and 'Advertisers in this edition' are the sole property of the companies named and copyright protected by the respectively named company. Please direct questions, feedback or request to be added to or deleted from our distribution list to

Disclaimer Statement: All information presented is for information purposes only and is not intended to provide professional or legal advise regarding actions to take in any situation. Advertisements are presented for information and marketing purposes only and the National Institute for Prevention of Workplace Violence, Inc. makes no representations for any products or services that are promoted and accepts no responsibility for any actions or consequences that occur as a result of any purchases from advertisers.