OREGON: Credit checks restricted under new law
An employer’s ability to look into an applicant or employee’s credit history will be significantly restricted under a bill passed by the Oregon legislature. Governor Kulongoski is expected to sign the bill, which should take effect on July 1, 2010. The bill makes it an unlawful employment practice for most employers to use credit histories to make employment decisions. An exception exists if you can show that the information is substantially job-related and you disclose your reasons for the use of such information in writing. Additional exceptions apply to employers that are federally insured banks or credit unions, employers that are required by law to verify credit history for employment purposes, and certain employers in law enforcement (SB 1045).
Tips: The Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries has been asked to issue emergency regulations to clarify the scope and application of this law. We will monitor any new developments and determine whether employers may be able to adapt their existing Fair Credit Reporting Act notices for this purpose. See our Model Form, “Background Checks: Federal Notices” (5341).