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Bayou Balancing: Fair Chance Law Becomes Effective Louisiana

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As of August 1, 2021, Louisiana employers are now subject to fair chance legislation that impacts their background screening programs. R.S. 23:291.2 (House Bill 707) affects both an employer’s obligations during the consideration of criminal records as well as restricts the records it can consider based on case status.

An employer cannot request or consider an arrest record or charge that did not result in a conviction if it receives that information during a background check. Additionally, like other jurisdictions that have enacted ban the box and fair chance laws, a Louisiana employer must conduct an individual assessment. It must consider whether a criminal record has a direct and adverse relationship with the specific duties of the job that justify denying the applicant the position. The assessment must also include a review of (1) the nature and gravity of the offense or conduct; (2) the time that has elapsed since the offense, conduct or conviction; and (3) the nature of the position sought. Upon written request by the applicant, an employer must make available any background check information used during the hiring process.

Even if your organization does not currently have applicants or employees in Louisiana, you may want to consider implementing a similar process as additional jurisdictions join the fair chance movement. While some laws merely restrict when you can ask about criminal records, others, including Louisiana, take it further and require a balancing of factors when making employment decisions based on criminal history. If you would like AccuSource to provide a complimentary review of your current background screening compliance program, please contact us at marketing@accusource-online.com.

Jennifer Daimon, Esq. | CIPM

Jennifer Daimon, Esq. | CIPM

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