No more credit history checks for job seekers

By Arnold Wyrick - bio | email

HERRIN, IL (KFVS) - Tuesday Illinois' Governor Pat Quinn signed into law House Bill 4658, putting a stop to pre-employment credit checks.

"A job seeker's ability to earn a decent living should not depend on how well they are weathering the greatest economic recession since the 1930's," said Governor Quinn.

Getting a job can be difficult and for some a credit report is something they don't want to have to worry about.

"I'm looking for a job right now and I don't think it should," said Donna Fisher.

"And if your credit is bad and you can't get a job because of it, that's a vicious cycle."

Brain Chapman executive director at MBI Worldwide, an employment screening service, says many of the employers he works have already stopped using credit checks.

"Several years ago our industry started going away from credit reports. We started recommending it only for financial or executive level positions," said Chapman.

Part of the reason for the shift says Chapman, is the report itself.

"Everybody has problems with their credit reports, there's a lot of erroneous information in it. And it's very hard to fix what's wrong with those things."

But, some mid-level managers see both sides of the issue.

"If I was an employer I think that would be an important criteria to know," said Denis Glennon.

"Because if I had an employee who couldn't manage their money I might not be so sure they can handle the job or task I have planned for them to do. But, as an employee, I don't think it's any of their business what I do with my money."

The new law will take affect on January 1, 2011. And Illinois is the 4th state to pass a measure to prohibit employers from discriminating against applicants because of a poor credit report.

There are currently sixteen other states in the nation that are considering a similar measure.

If you'd like to know more about how MBI Worldwide checks on potential employees, or how they can help you check out applicants just click on for more information.

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