Louisiana Background Check Laws

By John Landers
Louisiana background check laws enable organizations to investigate potential employees.

Louisiana state contour against blurred USA flag image by Stasys Eidiejus from Fotolia.com

Louisiana background check laws regulates the methods employers use to screen employees, contractors and volunteers. These screenings give employers and other organizations the ability to verify information entered on job applications. Residents may also use these reports to conduct background investigations on neighbors or acquaintances.

Fair Credit Reporting Act

Like other states, the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) governs the process of conducting Louisiana background checks. The FCRA make up the federal codes that regulate credit-reporting agencies and other third-party vendors that provide background information on individuals. FCRA determines what information background screening reports may contain. Before authorizing a screening report, employers or other organizations must inform the person of the investigation before proceeding and obtain his or her written consent.

These laws do not apply to screening conducted with in-house personnel or for jobs that pay in excess of $75,000 annually. FCRA does not apply to Louisiana private residents who conduct background checks.

Adverse Decisions

FCRA (Part 615 - Code of Federal Regulations) states that whenever an employer makes an adverse decision based on information contained in a screening report obtained from a background screening company or credit agency, the organization has the obligation to send a written notice to the person informing him or her of the decision. The company must also furnish to the individual the name and address of the agency that provided the information and advise the person of his or her right to see a copy of the background report.

Medical Information

It is illegal for third-party vendors to release background check records that contain information related to a person's medical condition for employment purposes or for making decision related to granting credit or insurance transactions. A person may give his clear consent for the release of medical information if the medical information is relevant to the job or influences the job or the granting or credit. In addition, the regulation allow for the release of medical records if it relates to accounts or transactions associated with the delivery of medical services.

Prohibited Information

The law specifies that certain adverse information can only appear in background check reports for a period of seven years. This includes civil suits, civil judgments, records of arrest and paid tax liens. Collection accounts and charged to profit and loss accounts also have a seven year limitation. Bankruptcies may appear in background checks up to ten years. Information related to criminal convictions may be reported in investigatory reports indefinitely. The exceptions to this rule are certain misdemeanor crimes that Louisiana statutes allow individuals to petition the courts to have the records expunged or sealed from public records.

About the Author

John Landers has a bachelor's degree in business administration. He worked several years as a senior manager in the housing industry before pursuing his passion to become a writer. He has researched and written articles on a wide variety of interesting subjects for an array of clients. He loves penning pieces on subjects related to business, health, law and technology.

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