Pre-Employment Screening: Avoiding Traps and Lawsuits

May 6, 2015

Hiring new employees is more difficult today than it has ever been before. The pervasive nature of social media, the legalized use of previously-illegal drugs, and increased concern for protecting individual and company confidences all pose potential barriers in making hiring decisions. Employers of all sizes are well-advised to implement legal pre-employment screening measures before hiring the wrong person for the job.  

Michigan law permits employers to implement several types of pre-employment screens. Employers can:

  • Conduct credit background checks under the Fair Credit Reporting Act.
  • Conduct criminal background checks and drug screens.
  • Use social media, including personal Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter accounts to screen potential new hires.

However, employers must be certain that they are following applicable laws when conducting pre-employment screens. In general, employers should obtain written consent from potential new hires when performing pre-hire tests or screens.

Contributed by David J. Houston, Member of Dickinson Wright PLLC.

View the on-demand webinar “Pre-Employment Screening: Legal & Effective Use in Hiring” with David Houston.