Florida State Laws on Employer Background Checks

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In the state of Florida, those applying for certain types of jobs, including those that deal with caring for the disabled, children or the elderly, are required to undergo specific types of background investigations. In addition, those with certain felonies on their records will be required to wait three years before working in roles of this nature. Employees with certain other criminal records may be denied clearance completely.

Florida Employment Background Check Laws

In the state of Florida, background checks are governed by some laws. There are both level 1 and level 2 background checks, depending on the type of job for which you are applying. These terms are unique to Florida when it comes to background investigations. They are not used by the FBI or other states in that context. Level 1 and 2 background checks are outlined in Chapter 435 of the Florida Statutes.

Anyone who is screened at level 1 in Florida must undergo background screening, including employment history checks and statewide criminal correspondence checks, through the Department of Law Enforcement. In addition, a check of the National Sex Offender Registry and local criminal records checks are also included.

Anyone who is screened at level 2 in Florida must undergo fingerprinting so that statewide criminal records can be checked with the Department of Law Enforcement. In addition, national criminal history records checks through the FBI and through local law enforcement agencies will also be included. If your background check returns certain “disqualifying offenses,” you will not be given clearance.

Disqualifying offenses are numerous, and generally deal with issues that would cause harm to children, the elderly or other groups requiring protection. They include: sexual misconduct with developmentally disabled individuals; adult abuse, neglect or exploitation of the elderly or disabled adults; murder; manslaughter; vehicular homicide; felony assault, battery and culpable negligence; assault or battery of a minor; kidnapping; and false imprisonment.

Seven Year Background Check in Florida

When you undergo a background check, you may wonder how long certain records, such as criminal ones, will remain in your file. Generally speaking, unless you have a record expunged, it will remain indefinitely in your background report. If it is expunged, it will not be included in your background check.

However, some kinds of records, such as civil suits, civil judgments, arrest records and paid tax liens, are limited by the Fair Credit Reporting Act’s “7-year rule,” which requires these records be removed after seven years. The FCRA’s seven-year rule applies to every state in the United States, so Florida background check requirements abide by the rule, as well.

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