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New York City Council Bans Use of Credit Data for Employment Background Checks

New York City Council has passed a bill banning employers from screening job candidates’ credit files, which is expected to be signed into law later this year by the city’s mayor.

If the bill becomes law, employers – even within the traditionally-excluded financial sector – will soon no longer be able to buy credit reports of job applicants or existing employees.

Opponents of employers using financial checks on workers have long-argued the practice unfairly discriminates against applicants with adverse credit histories, particularly low-income workers.

They argue job-seekers are being excluded during the hiring process because of reasons such as healthcare debt, student loans, divorce and identity theft, which can all be flagged by commercial credit checks.

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