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Credit checks necessary in some fields

Nov 16, 2011 Walt Wojoiechowski

Credit checks necessary in some fields
Maryland is one of six states that currently limit the use of credit reports for employment, the Daily Times reports.
 State Governor Martin O'Malley passed the Maryland Job Applicant Fairness Act this past spring, which prohibits employers from using credit score as the sole reason for rejection, discharge or determining compensation. However, exceptions to this rule do exist - for example if the potential employee will be handling money. "I think it's obvious that if we're entrusting the person with financial matters, that would be part of a relevant background check," Joe Forsthoffer, corporate communications manager at Perdue Farms, told the media outlet. Leah Cole, co-owner of a Wilmington, Delaware-based background check company, adds that credit checks should be necessary in the food and housing industries as well. Yet not all banks uniformly check applicant scores. Fred Soloman, spokesman for PNC Bank, noted that his company generally doesn't conduct credit checks on potential applicants, and those who undergo the screenings "are the exceptions." A recent study from the Journal of Applied Psychology attempted to determine how much - if at all - an employee's credit score affects the person's ability to do his or her job effectively, the Consumerist reports. According to researchers, "Credit scores did not ... predict workplace deviance."