These days, most employers perform comprehensive background checks on job applicants to make sure they only hire the right talent. HireRight and other screening companies assist these organizations by providing background check services. In theory, this system should work well.
In reality, HireRight can and does make mistakes that can cost you job offers and other opportunities in the long run. If you believe your HireRight background check contains one or more errors, keep reading. We’ll break down what you can do, what your rights are, and how to dispute HireRight background checks in detail.
HireRight Solutions LLC is a California-based company headquartered in Irvine. It was launched in 1997, and it was the original background screening service that offered this type of work online. It was also the first to partner with applicant-tracking solution providers and to develop pre-integrated screening solutions.
Today, HireRight is one of the most popular background screening services in the world, offering its services to organizations in North America, Europe, India, and beyond. It’s used by organizations in the retail, manufacturing, education, and other industries.
HireRight is known for its comprehensive and in-depth background checks, which normally include a wide range of information about job candidates or loan applicants. HireRight normally includes the following information with its background check services:
However, keep in mind that your specific background check may not include all of the above information. Depending on what your prospective employer wants, it may ask HireRight to focus on one or another element of your background or task HireRight to ignore another element of your background entirely.
For example, many rideshare companies may use HireRight to determine whether a job applicant will be a good driver. But they ask HireRight to look at driving records and criminal conviction records specifically rather than worrying too much about a potential driver’s credit history.
Unfortunately, despite having a lot of experience in the background check industry, HireRight can and does make mistakes from time to time. If HireRight makes a mistake and provides an employer with inaccurate information, it could have severe consequences for job applicants or candidates.
For instance, say that you apply for a new job in the financial industry. Everything seems to be going smoothly, but HireRight makes a mistake because it identifies an outstanding debt in your name, which decreases your credit score. You know that you don’t have that debt, but your prospective employer doesn’t, so you miss out on the job offer.
After the fact, you learn that HireRight mistook your identity for someone with a similar name, costing you a job in the process.
As another example, imagine a worker at the same financial institution. They’re up for promotion, but a HireRight background check reveals worrying information: they had a criminal background that wasn’t caught before. The worker loses out on the promotion opportunity, even though they didn’t actually have a criminal background.
In short, a background check mistake from HireRight can cost you job opportunities, financial opportunities, and even opportunities for promotion. This can devastate your professional trajectory and make it difficult to earn money. In some circumstances, HireRight may be liable for a lawsuit because this constitutes real damage to your person and livelihood.
HireRight background check mistakes can occur for a variety of reasons.
For example, maybe you have a very common name and HireRight mistakes you for another person, resulting in a case of mistaken identity. Alternatively, HireRight is comprised of human agents who do make mistakes every once in a while. They might simply look at the wrong information or fail to catch inaccurate information as they take a look at your credit profile.
But HireRight background check mistakes aren’t always the fault of HireRight itself. Other organizations can be the ultimate culprits for losing out on a job or loan opportunity.
Say that you don’t qualify for a promotion because your credit score is too low or because a HireRight background check indicates that you have too much outstanding debt. When you investigate, you find that there is inaccurate information on all three of your credit reports.
In this circumstance, it’s not HireRight’s fault that you lost out on the promotion offer. It’s actually the fault of the credit bureaus and any credit furnishers that did not ensure your credit report had accurate information.
Under the FCRA, you are entitled to an adverse action letter if you miss out on a financial or job opportunity because of some aspect of your background or credit history. So, for example, if you are fired because of your criminal background, your prospective employer is required to send you an adverse action letter explaining that you were denied and breaking down where they got the information.
Adverse action letters are important tools because they give you a chance to investigate potentially erroneous information. So if you don't have a criminal background, you can then investigate personally, find the person or party responsible for the false information, and get the matter resolved.
If you don't receive an adverse action letter after being denied a job or loan, and the denial was because of some aspect of your background or credit history, you should ask for one immediately. If you still don't receive one, the organization that should have given it to you is in violation of the FCRA, and you may have grounds for a lawsuit.
Remember, one of your key rights as an American consumer is that you should always receive an adverse action letter if your credit or background history is the result of any application denial.
HireRight might make many different kinds of background check errors and mistakes. These include:
Any and all of these errors could cost you a job or promotion opportunity, plus make it more difficult for you to get hired by other organizations in the future.
In some cases, HireRight may display criminal convictions on your background check report to a prospective employer. That may or may not be legal, depending on the circumstances of the criminal convictions in question.
For instance, many things are not allowed to appear on background checks after seven years. These include civil suits and judgments, arrest records, any accounts in collection, and paid tax liens. In addition, many misdemeanor convictions are supposed to fade away after 7 to 10 years.
Felony criminal convictions may stay on your record indefinitely, however, and certain misdemeanor convictions can also stay on your record permanently. Therefore, speak to a legal representative or investigate your background thoroughly to determine whether HireRight has actually made a mistake by including criminal convictions on your background check or if the organization is technically within its legal rights.
When the time comes to dispute a HireRight background check, you have a few different options to get the job done.
First, you can contact HireRight itself. HireRight has to deal with disputes all the time, so it’s no stranger to the process. More importantly, under the FCRA, HireRight has the legal obligation to investigate any background check disputes you may file with them within 30 days.
You can file a background check dispute letter with HireRight or contact the organization online. Be sure to provide HireRight with as many supplementary and substantiating documents as you can to prove that they made a mistake with your background check.
Once HireRight receives this information, it has to investigate the matter within 30 days, then get back to you within five extra days. If HireRight notices any erroneous information, it has the legal obligation to correct the inaccurate info and tell that to your employer or to any other organization that received the info.
For instance, if HireRight made a mistake by mistaking your identity for someone else’s and claimed you had a criminal background, HireRight then has to go back to the employer you applied to and explain what happened.
In some cases, this could result in you getting another shot at a job opportunity or promotion. But even if you don’t get another shot, you’ll at least be able to rest assured that the same problem won’t continue to follow or affect you in the future.
However, what if HireRight discovers that the erroneous information was located on your credit report? In that case, you’ll need to speak to the credit bureaus or credit furnishers themselves, not HireRight.
That involves filing a credit dispute letter, similar to filing a background dispute letter. You’ll want to include substantiating information backing up your claim, plus break down exactly what inaccurate credit info needs to be fixed. If the credit bureaus or background check agencies don’t fix inaccurate information, you may have no choice but to speak to legal representatives.
Sometimes, background check organizations like HireRight don’t correct inaccurate information, despite it being brought to their attention. If this happens to you, don’t give up. You may just need to contact legal experts, like attorneys.
The right attorneys can file a lawsuit against HireRight on your behalf. In this circumstance, HireRight has caused meaningful damage to you because it prevented you from getting a job or promotion, which tangibly impacts your life and financial wellness. If you succeed in the lawsuit, you could recover damages to compensate you for the losses you sustained.
More importantly, legal experts can take a hard look at your situation and recommend one means of recourse over another, like a lawsuit vs. arbitration. Be sure to listen to the recommendations of the experts you contact – they’ll know whether any lawsuit has a good chance of succeeding or not.
Not sure who to contact? Fair Credit’s specialized law firm is a boutique organization that can help you file a successful lawsuit against background check agencies, credit furnishers, and other organizations. Our lawyers have extensive experience in this arena, so they’re the perfect people to call if you need help getting your information corrected ASAP.
HireRight background check errors can happen. When they do, remember that you do have rights and options under the FCRA. Prepare to dispute any HireRight background check mistakes and don't hesitate to contact Fair Credit for more advice regarding your credit report and fixing credit report errors of all kinds.