The Legality and Ethics of Business Background Checks.

Essay by dirt159University, Master'sA+, October 2006

download word file, 7 pages 3.0

The Supreme Court has broadly defined privacy as the right of the individual to control the giving out of information about oneself. Privacy as guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution differs in two significant ways from privacy protected by tort law: (1) the types of acts constituting an invasion of privacy are very different, and (2) the type of protection provided to individuals - constitutional privacy protects against governmental intrusion while tort law primarily protects against invasion by private parties.

Restrictions imposed by the Fourth Amendment are effective against the federal government while the Fourteenth Amendment imposes these restrictions on state and local governments. The Fourth Amendment is not effective against private entities.

Since 9/11 and the passage of the `Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism (USA PATRIOT ACT) Act of 2001' and the ''USA PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization Act of 2005''[ ], the privacy of the population is at risk.

Checking of credit, social security, and I.N.S. status histories: An employer may use consumer reports when a new employee is hired and when an employee is evaluated for promotion, reassignment, or retention as long as the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) is complied with. Sections 604, 606, and 615 [ ]of the FCRA spell out your responsibilities when using consumer reports for employment purposes. The anti-discrimination provision of the Immigration Reform and Control Act provides that an employer cannot discriminate because an applicant is not a U.S. citizen. But an employer must verify the I.N.S. status for new hires. All U.S. employer have to fill out federal I-9 forms that document applicants' Social Security numbers and permits to work in the U.S. These documents must be saved for at least three years.[ ]

Ethically, consumer reports should only be used...