Update: Philadelphia Ban the Box Proposal

February 1, 2016 | posted in: Ban the Box, FCRA | by

Philadelphia has amended Chapter 9-3500 of the city code to implement the following changes, effective March 14th, 2016:

  • The ordinance applies to all employers in Philadelphia, with the only exception being law enforcement.
  • Employers cannot inquire about an applicant’s criminal history until a conditional job offer has been made.
  • Employers cannot ask whether an applicant is willing to submit to a background check prior to a conditional job offer.
  • A new disclosure is required. It must contain a statement such as: “Consideration of a criminal record will be tailored to the requirements of the job.” CRAs and employers should both be aware of this.
  • Certain factors must be assessed by the employer when reviewing criminal records.
    • The nature of the offense.
    • The time that has passed since the offense.
    • The applicant’s employment history before and after the offense, and any period of incarceration.
    • The particular duties of the job being sought.
    • Any character or employment references provided by the applicant.
    • Any evidence of applicant’s rehabilitation since the conviction.
  • Employers may only consider convictions within the past 7 years from the date of release.
  • Employers are required to provide a notice of rejection when taking adverse action against applicants. Employers must allow 10 days for rejected applicants to disprove the information or provide an explanation. A copy of the background report must be included with the notice.
  • Employers may be sued for violating this ordinance. Fines can be up to $2,000 per violation.
  • Employers must post a notice of rights (provided by the city) at each location.

At Confirm Choice, we have experience dealing with Ban the Box in its various forms and would be happy to assist you with any questions you might have. Please contact us for more information.