A routine South Carolina background check as part of your hiring procedure, can significantly help your business meet its hiring objectives. Background investigations, both official and unofficial, can show a person’s arrests, convictions, previous residences, and other details. South Carolina makes some records searchable by the general public in both official and informal ways.
To lessen your chances of facing legal action, you must adhere to all rules and laws that govern the conduct of South Carolina background checks. You must be well-versed in the regulations governing pre-employment screenings in South Carolina and have access to the resources required to gather comprehensive background data from dependable sources in order to conduct South Carolina employment background checks in compliance with the law.
Employment Background Check Laws in South Carolina
Employers in South Carolina need to be aware of how local, state, and federal laws impact the data that consumer reporting agencies can access, report, and use, as well as how employers can use it. Penalties, fines, and legal action may result from breaking the law.
The following is a list of some of the most crucial laws that South Carolina employers should be aware of when working with independent consumer reporting companies for pre-employment background checks.
Act on Public Records in South Carolina
The Freedom of Information Act is upheld in South Carolina with regard to public record access. The act aims to provide as much public access as possible to the documentation of decisions made by local and state governments. Records available include meeting notes and minutes as well as the names of people who have been arrested and are being held in jails and prisons.
In South Carolina, organizations have the option to limit access to many public records. Requests for restricted documents must be accompanied by a good reason for the inspection. Trade secrets and any other information that unnecessarily infringes on a person’s privacy are examples of the kinds of documents that can be restricted. This can include past convictions, business contracts, salaries for specific groups, and many other things.
Other documents are always subject to public access restrictions in South Carolina. This includes autopsies, images and videos of jails, and recordings of fatal 911 calls. In general, direct public access to any document that discloses protected statuses like race, color, national origin, religion, disability, sex, or gender is prohibited.
Federal Regulations on Background Checks for Employment
Pre-employment background checks are permitted in every state, including South Carolina, under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which are two fundamental federal laws.
The majority of the time, employers are prohibited from discriminating against applicants based solely on the results of background checks by federal law, which is implemented through the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Employers should have a policy in place that guarantees all employees and applicants undergo the same background checks, according to the EEOC. Under federal law, discrimination may be committed if adverse decisions are made based on convictions that are unrelated to the nature of the job.
State Regulations on Employment Background Checks in South Carolina
If CRAs receive consumer complaints about the information on an employment background check report and they determine the information is accurate, they must go above and beyond what is required by the FCRA.
According to S.C. Code Ann. 37-20-170, the CRA is required to send a special notice to the applicant outlining the reasons for the denial as well as sufficient supporting documentation.
Employers are prohibited from using expunged records when making hiring decisions for candidates or current employees under S.C. Code Ann. 17-22-960. Additionally, employers are protected from claims of negligent hiring brought about by the hiring of candidates with expunged records.
Child welfare organizations are required to abide by the SC Code Ann. 63-11-70 pardons provisions. This statute prohibits child welfare organizations from taking pardons into account, but it does allow them to do so when making employment decisions. They will therefore need to conduct an investigation.
What Happens During a South Carolina Background Check?
Depending on what they order, South Carolina employers who order pre-employment background checks from backgroundchecks, freebackgroundchecks, iprospectcheck will see various types of information on their reports. Employers can customize their requests based on their unique hiring requirements.
In South Carolina, the majority of employers ask for details on applicants’ disciplinary histories, prior employment histories, and educational backgrounds. The kinds of details you might anticipate finding in each of these pre-employment background checks are described in more detail below.
Data Repository for South Carolina
Through the South Carolina State Digital Collection, South Carolina maintains a state-wide repository of official records. The Department of Law Enforcement and the Office of the Attorney General both produce records that can be searched online.
The information from court records is kept online by each county in South Carolina. Every county and court must post the documents that are available for viewing.
Please take note that the statewide court records search was not available at the time this article was written.
These are some of the details you will need to keep in mind as you conduct a South Carolina background check. They are meant to make your lookup process as smooth as possible.