Michigan, other states move to ban employment credit checks

By Sylvia Hsieh

The Daily Record Newswire

hree more states are following a movement to curb employers' use of credit checks.

Florida, Michigan and Montana introduced bills earlier this month banning credit background checks as an employment screen.

Florida's bill, SB 1562, prohibits the use of credit histories as hiring criteria except where legally required and directly related to the position.

Michigan's bill, HB 4363, prohibits employers from requesting credit history or making hiring decisions based an applicant's credit history unless good credit is a requirement of the job position.

A plaintiff could sue for civil damages or injunctive relief.

Montana's HB 601 prohibits employers' use of credit information for employment purposes, unless the current or potential position is one where credit is issued in goods or as a line of credit or where a fiduciary duty is owed to the employer.

Employers who violate the proposed law or misuse credit data are subject to a fine of $250 for first offense and $500 for subsequent offenses.

Similar bills are being considered in more than a dozen other states.

Illinois, Oregon and Washington already have laws in place.

Published: Mon, Apr 4, 2011

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