DC Credit Summary - March 23rd, 2017

Effective on March 17, 2017, the District of Columbia will restrict the use of credit information in hiring. On February 15, Mayor Muriel Bowser signed D.C. Act 21-673, the Fair Credit in Employment Amendment Act of 2016, prohibiting employers and employment agencies from taking an adverse action on an applicant or current employee based on their credit information.

The new law is broad in scope, limiting credit inquiries by employers whether they are made pre- or post-offer. The law applies not only to hiring, but also to decisions about compensation, promotions, or terms of employment.

The law provides exemptions for the following:

  • The employer is required by law to request or inquire into an employee’s credit history
  • A police or law enforcement officer
  • The applicant is applying to the Office of the Chief Financial Officer of the District of Columbia
  • An employee is required to possess a security clearance
  • Disclosures by district government employees of their credit information to the board of ethics and government accountability of the office of the Inspector General
  • Financial institutions where the position involves access to personal financial information
  • Where an employer requests or receives credit information pursuant to a lawful subpoena, court order, or law enforcement investigation

The full text of the bill is located here: http://www.dcregs.dc.gov/Gateway/NoticeHome.aspx?noticeid=6429177

Clients are encouraged to consult with their legal counsel on the impact of this new law, and review their screening policies for jobs and applicants in the District of Columbia.