Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Pre-Hire Credit Check - Illinois' Employers prohibited by the New Law HB 4658

The new law in Illinois HB 4658 'Employee Credit Privacy Act' was signed into Law by Governor Pat Quinn on August 10, 2010. This  law will take effect on January 1, 2011.  Under this act, Illinoi's employers may not use a person's credit history to determine employment, recruiting, discharge or compensation.

This new Law forbids employers to execute a credit check of an applicant to a specific job by obtaining a credit history or credit report.  The Society of the Human Resources Management was quoted at the Press Release of the Governor Quinn's Office dated August 10, 2010 that it found 60 percent of  employers run a credit check on at least some applicants. 42 percent increase from 2006 data and 25 percent in 1998.

Governor Quinn emphasized, "A job seeker's ability to earn a decent living should not depend on how well they are weathering the greatest economic recession since 1930's. This law will stop employers from denying  a job or promotion based on information that is not an indicator of a person's character or ability to do a job well."

To read the complete details please click the link on the Press Release.


This Law is a great protection for any job seeker in Illinois from the unprecedented increased of employers' practices relating to Pre-Employment Credit Checks.

HR Professionals who are within the auspices of an Illinois employer must be mindful on the implications, limitations and penalties of this new Law. They should understand the particulars of this Law when they will exercise the option of using the Credit Check or Credit Report as a requisite  of a particular job.

However, employers who may be hiring a job seeker from Illinois for an employment opportunity outside the state of Illinois was not spelled in the Press Release whether or not the new law protects the job seeker from being inquired with Credit History or Report.

Generally, employers that demonstrate effective business practices however uphold the 'Non-Discrimination Laws' to protect any job seeker.

Be pro-active as an HR Business Partner in your organization.  Provide guidance to your Executives when making decisions pertaining to the management of people. If you don't have competencies of being an efficient HR Business Partner call us at JNT Consulting. Our External HR Business Partner expertise can be a great help to you and your organization.

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