Criminal Record Check: “You Ruined My Life!”

criminal-record-checkNo dude, I didn’t.  And let’s be frank, that’s okay, right?  I mean you are accusing me of something serious. First, let’s cut through the inflated self-worth and cut to the chase.  I have never met you.  I don’t know you.  And you are one criminal record check out of more than 10,000 we processed last month.  More than 10% of those background checks contained a criminal record so we really don’t have time to target an unknown person to ruin their life.

And anyway, that is not my style.  I am about building people up.

“But I have been through all kinds of background checks before and nobody else has reported this!”

Ok, I take that as a compliment.  Really.  Thanks.  Our mission is to keep our clients safe.  Simple as that.

Yes, I need to vent a little this morning.  It has been one call after another from applicants who are angry because we reported a criminal record.

Catch that?  A criminal record, they did not claim we reported an inaccurate record.

My first question is always, “Is the criminal record check accurate?”

Then I have to interrupt and put on the brakes.  I still don’t like to interrupt.  Thanks mom.  But I don’t have time for the conversation to sidetrack to an angry diatribe about an accurate criminal record being reported.

If the background screening report is not accurate, then I want and need to know.  We take great pride in providing the most comprehensive background checks available but also are very focused on making sure the reports are accurate.

We have a legal obligation under the Fair Credit Reporting Act AND a moral obligation to our clients and applicants to make sure any adverse information reported is accurate.  And if not, to reinvestigate and correct it.

Yes, the courts make mistakes.  Come on, let’s be realistic.  Court records are inputted by a human being so there is always a chance for mistakes.

Does that mean there are a lot of people falsely accused of crimes?  No, the errors we see generally surround cases that have further court action.  Like a felony that is reduced to a misdemeanor.  Or a court grants post conviction relief.  Get that.  They were convicted and the court later wiped it away.  Not an innocent person misidentified.

But that is not the conversations I am talking about here.  I am talking about a man that has called our office several times over the past few weeks upset because we reported 2 counts of Sexual Misconduct with a Minor.

So how did I ruin your life?  You can’t be implying that I had anything to do with you having sexual relations with a minor back in 2003.  Actually, Safe Hiring Solutions was not launched until 2004.  And remember, I have never met you.

The point I want to make is that none of these applicants are claiming they did not do the crime.  They did.  They just don’t like taking responsibility for what they did.

Why?  Well, for starters, they probably did not disclose it on the application.  And it hasn’t shown in other background checks so they are taking the road of dishonesty and not reporting it.  And then we call them out by reporting it.

So Mr. Criminal, I did not ruin your life.  I exposed you from the darkness.  You made a decision to use violence, to break the law and there are consequences for that.

The lesson to be learned is that a comprehensive criminal record check protects your organization.  Those criminals we are trying to keep out will manipulate, deceive and do whatever it takes to get through our doors.

And before somebody leaves me a comment about people changing, I agree.  I spoke with an applicant yesterday who had a criminal record from 10 years ago.  He was honest with me and our client and has done nothing since then.  See the difference?  Honesty and personal responsibility.  That is the key difference.