How to Prepare for an Employment Background Check

Tips for Getting Ready for a Background Check for a Job

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Are you ready for a potential employer to check your background? It's always a good idea to know about any red flags that might be on your record, so you can plan on how you will handle them. The best way to prepare for an employment background check is to be aware of the information that an employer might find - in advance.

Don't wait until you're in the middle of a job search to prepare for an employment background check.

Instead, be aware of the information employers may check and know what part of your background may an issue when you're seeking employment.

How to Prepare for an Employment Background Check

This way you'll be prepared ahead of time for an employment background check and be prepared to answer interview questions about your credit, your driving record, and other items an employer may consider relevant when hiring.

Credit Report. Get a copy of your credit report. You can order a free copy of your credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion) every year. If there is erroneous information, dispute it with the creditor.

Criminal Records. Some states don't allow questions about arrests or convictions beyond a certain point in the past. Others only allow consideration of criminal history for certain positions. Here's how a criminal record impacts your job search.

Driving Record. Check your motor vehicle record by requesting a copy of your record from your state Department of Motor Vehicles. You may be able to review your driving record online at the DMV web site. If you have a history of traffic violations and you're interviewing for a job where a license is required, be prepared for questions about your driving record.

Employer References. There are no federal laws restricting what information an employer can disclose about former employees. Ask your previous employers for copies of your employment files and be sure you know what your references are going to say about you. Here's information on what employers can legally say about you.

Know Your Rights. When employers conduct a check of your background (credit, criminal, past employer) using a third party, the background check is covered by The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). The FCRA defines a background check as a consumer report. Before an employer can get a consumer report for employment purposes, they must notify you in writing and get your written consent.

Employment Background Checks
Employment background check and employment verification information, including what information employers can, and can't, find out about job applicants and employees.

Employment Law
Here is information on what you need to know about employment law when you're job searching or when you lose your job - wages, background checks, required employment forms, unemployment and other related information.

Suggested Reading: What is an Employment Credit Check?