EEOC to Hold Meeting on the Use of Credit History as Employment Screening Device

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) will conduct a public meeting to discuss the use of credit checks in the employment context. According to the notice (pdf) published in today’s edition of the Federal Register, the meeting will be held on Wednesday, October 20, 2010, at 9:30 a.m. EDT in the EEOC’s meeting room on the first floor of the EEOC office building, 131 M Street, NE., Washington, DC 20507. Due to limited seating and the security process, attendees are encouraged to arrive at least 30 minutes in advance.

The use of credit checks in employment has been receiving some attention in Congress. Last month, the House Financial Services Committee conducted a hearing to discuss the Equal Employment for All Act (H.R. 3149), a bill that would amend the Fair Credit Reporting Act to make it unlawful, with certain limited exceptions, to base adverse employment decisions against prospective and current employees on consumer credit reports. This legislation has not advanced in Congress.

This is the second meeting held in recent years in which the use of credit checks in the employment process has been discussed at an EEOC meeting. On May 16, 2007, a public meeting was held in which the EEOC discussed “how agency-enforced laws apply to employment testing and screening

Topics of discussion at the 2007 meeting included the use of credit histories in the pre-employment process. No formal action was taken by the EEOC following the 2007 meeting.

Information contained in this publication is intended for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or opinion, nor is it a substitute for the professional judgment of an attorney.