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Limits On Job Applicant Criminal History Inquiries

Concerning the timing of an inquiry into a job applicant's criminal history, and, in connection therewith, making an appropriation.
2019 Regular Session
Labor & Employment
Bill Summary

Hiring practices - limitations on criminal history inquiries - exceptions - enforcement - appropriation. Effective September 1, 2019, for employers with 11 or more employees, and effective September 1, 2021, for all employers, employers are prohibited from:

  • Advertising that a person with a criminal history may not apply for a position;
  • Placing a statement in an employment application that a person with a criminal history may not apply for a position; or
  • Inquiring about an applicant's criminal history on an initial application.

An employer may obtain a job applicant's publicly available criminal background report at any time.

An employer is exempt from the restrictions on advertising and initial employment applications when:

  • The law prohibits a person who has a particular criminal history from being employed in a particular job;
  • The employer is participating in a program to encourage employment of people with criminal histories; or
  • The employer is required by law to conduct a criminal history record check for the particular position.

The department of labor and employment (department) is charged with enforcing the requirements of the act and may issue warnings and orders of compliance for violations and, for second or subsequent violations, impose civil penalties. A violation of the restrictions does not create a private cause of action, and the act does not create a protected class under employment anti-discrimination laws. The department is directed to adopt rules regarding procedures for handling complaints against employers.

The department is appropriated $38,113 from the employment support fund and 0.6 FTE to implement the act.

(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)


Became Law


Bill Text

The effective date for bills enacted without a safety clause is August 7, 2024, if the General Assembly adjourns sine die on May 8, 2024, unless otherwise specified. Details