For any business owner, building a trustworthy and efficient professional team is a challenge. It’s critical to take into account all facets of an applicant’s history when evaluating their suitability, not just their resume. You can obtain crucial information for your decision-making process by ordering a West Virginia background check.
In West Virginia, anyone can perform unauthorized background investigations on a person to learn more about their past. Although they cannot be used for housing, loans, or employment, unofficial background checks can provide information about Companions, Friends, Family, Enemies, and Romantic Interests.
Background checks are permissible for official purposes in West Virginia. It complies with federal regulations set forth by the Federal Trade Commission, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and Fair Credit Reporting Agency.
In West Virginia, hiring practices must strictly abide by all applicable local, state, and federal laws.
The laws that apply are covered below.
Act on Freedom of Information
In West Virginia, a large number of court records and government-produced documents are available to the general public. The specific guidelines and rules that mandate that certain state agencies make their records available for inspection are outlined in the West Virginia Freedom of Information Act.
Background checks are not specifically prohibited by law in West Virginia. West Virginia employers must adhere to federal law.
Federal Regulations on Background Checks for Employment
Act on Fair Credit Reporting (FCRA)
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) enforces the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), which safeguards the privacy of consumer information in the information collected, maintained, and reported by consumer reporting agencies (CRAs).
The FCRA also regulates the use of background check information provided to employers.
You need to get their written consent before conducting any background checks on potential employees after informing them that you plan to do so.
Before making a final decision, you must follow the FCRA’s adverse action procedure if you decide not to hire a candidate due to information revealed in a background check.
The Civil Rights Act of 1964’s Title VII
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is responsible for enforcing Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII), which forbids workplace discrimination based on protected characteristics of employees and applicants.
When a background check report reveals an applicant’s criminal conviction, Title VII governs the hiring process.
The EEOC advises that before making a hiring decision, you should consider each conviction in light of how it relates to the position the applicant is applying for.
State laws in West Virginia
Law on Social Media Privacy
Employers are forbidden from requesting or coercing job applicants and employees for their social media usernames and passwords, requesting that they access their social media pages while the employers are present, or requesting or coercing them to add the employers to their contact lists, according to W. Va. Code 21-5H-1.
Passwords required to access devices that the employer has provided to an employee may be requested by the employer.
Clearance of Some Criminal Records
According to W. Va. Code 61-11-26, individuals who have misdemeanor convictions or convictions for nonviolent felonies on their records may petition the court for their expungement.
One year after serving their sentence, someone with one misdemeanor conviction can ask to have their record expunged.
If a person has been convicted of two or more misdemeanors, they must wait two years after serving their last sentence.
Finally, there is a five-year waiting period after sentences are served for nonviolent felonies.
When a criminal conviction is expunged, it is no longer accessible to the general public, and employers are no longer permitted to inquire about or base hiring decisions on expunged criminal convictions.
Protections for Medical Marijuana Users in the Workplace
Registered medical marijuana users who apply for jobs and those who already have them have some employment protections under the West Virginia Medical Cannabis Act.
Employers are prohibited from discriminating against applicants or employees based solely on the fact that they are registered users of medical marijuana, according to W.Va. Code 16A-15-4.
Employers, however, have the right to forbid employees from using medical marijuana while at work.
What Turns Up on a West Virginia Background Check for Employment?
Depending on the kinds of screens you request, we might report different pieces of information about your West Virginia employment background check.
Most employers in West Virginia require information on a candidate’s criminal history, education, employment history, and credentials.
You might also ask for motor vehicle records checks if any of your positions require driving as part of the job. Pre-employment drug tests are a common request from employers.
How to Check Someone’s Background in West Virginia
You can ask the West Virginia State Police Criminal Identification Bureau to run a criminal background check on a potential hire by having them submit their fingerprints via IdentGo Services and providing a signed written authorization.
Background checks can be requested by employers in the child- and adult-serving sectors from the West Virginia Department of Human Resources Bureau for Children and Families.
An applicant’s criminal history will not be revealed by a state-run criminal background check, nor will it provide any other crucial information regarding the applicant’s employment, education, credentials, or other matters.
Some West Virginia employers use a do-it-yourself approach to background checks in an effort to compile background data by running online searches and submitting requests to numerous institutions and agencies.
This can take time and could result in information that is inaccurate, incomplete, or non-compliant.
With this information in mind, you are on your way to a comprehensive West Virginia background check. The details will not only assist conduct an effective background lookup process but also avoid breaking the laws of the state.