Fair chance or Ban-the-Box laws restrict an employer from asking about an applicant’s criminal background history in the early stages of the hiring process. And while there is no federal Ban the Box law that applies to private sector employers, the EEOC and the Arizona Civil Rights Division prohibit employers from asking an applicant about an arrest record absent a compelling reason to do so.

In the face of the current workforce shortage, many employers are revisiting current policies requiring employees to be at least 18 years of age and expanding job opportunities to young workers. Employers considering such policy changes should keep in mind state and federal child labor laws ensure minors receive access to safe occupations that do not jeopardize their health, well-being, or educational opportunities.

Many employers find it worthwhile to check the references, job history, personal character, criminal conviction history or credit history of an individual prior to making the decision to hire or promote.

This can be done through an in-house investigation using public records or by an outside third-party consumer reporting agency (CRA). Initiating background checks and calling an applicant’s referencesare typical screening methods. However, if not performed in accordance with state and federal lawsthey can expose an employer to legal and financial risk.

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