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Colorado Background Check Laws

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Colorado Employment Screening laws

Employers that are either located in Colorado or hiring Colorado residents must abide by the Federal FCRA, and applicable Colorado state employment laws.

This page was created to provide a simple explanation of what an end-user of a background screening report (also known as consumer report) can use in order to be in compliance with Colorado state laws. This page also contains steps an end-user must take to stay in compliance with Colorado state laws.

Please keep in mind that the EEOC must always be taken into consideration when a hiring decision is to be made. The EEOC has provided guidance on how employers can use criminal records during the hiring process. This regulation was issued on April 25, 2012. The EEOC requires employers to individually review each applicant or employee that may be disqualified due to a criminal record. This also follows the regulations set forth by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Additionally, the EEOC wants to undertake an adverse action process similar to that of the FCRA. They want to add a pre-adverse action process of their own. Although employers already have an adverse action process that is specific to information contained in consumer reports, the EEOC's adverse action process may be different.

The information that is provided on this page does not discuss requirements under the EEOC nor does it explain how to use criminal records that fall under the regulation of the EEOC. It is suggested that compliance with the EEOC be discussed with legal counsel.

For more detailed information on Colorado state laws, please consult your legal counsel.

Background Check Law Ban the Box Law Court Fee Summary of Rights

Employment Background Check Laws In Colorado:

Colorado Revised Statutes 24-5-101: Effect of criminal conviction on employment rights.

(1)(a) Except as otherwise provided in paragraph (b) of this subsection (1), the fact that a person has been convicted of a felony or other offense involving moral turpitude shall not, in and of itself, prevent the person from applying for and obtaining public employment or from applying for and receiving a license, certification, permit, or registration required by the laws of this state to follow any business, occupation, or profession.

(b) This subsection (1) shall not apply to:

(I) The offices and convictions described in section 4 of article XII of the state constitution ;

(II) The certification and revocation of certification of peace officers as provided in section 24-31-305 ;

(III) The employment of personnel in positions involving direct contact with vulnerable persons as specified in section 27-90-111, C.R.S .;

(IV) The licensure or authorization of educators prohibited pursuant to section 22-60.5-107(2) , (2.5) , or (2.6), C.R.S .;

(V) The employment of persons in public or private correctional facilities pursuant to the provisions of sections 17-1-109.5 and 17-1-202(1)(a)(I) and (1.5), C.R.S ., and the employment of persons in public or private juvenile facilities pursuant to the provisions of sections 19-2-403.3 and 19-2-410(4), C.R.S .;

(VI) The employment of persons by the public employees’ retirement association created pursuant to section 24-51-201 who, upon the commencement of that employment, will have access to association investment information, association assets, or financial, demographic, or other information relating to association members or beneficiaries;  and

(VII) The employment of persons by the department of public safety and the department of corrections.

(2) Whenever any state or local agency is required to make a finding that an applicant for a license, certification, permit, or registration is a person of good moral character as a condition to the issuance thereof, the fact that such applicant has, at some time prior thereto, been convicted of a felony or other offense involving moral turpitude, and pertinent circumstances connected with such conviction, shall be given consideration in determining whether, in fact, the applicant is a person of good moral character at the time of the application.  The intent of this section is to expand employment opportunities for persons who, notwithstanding that fact of conviction of an offense, have been rehabilitated and are ready to accept the responsibilities of a law-abiding and productive member of society.

(3)(a) Unless statute prohibits the employment of a person with a specific criminal conviction for a particular position, an agency shall not advertise the position with a statement that a person with a criminal record may not apply for the position or place on the application a statement that a person with a criminal record may not apply for the position.

(b) With the exception of the department of corrections and the department of public safety, the agency shall not perform a background check until the agency determines that an applicant is a finalist or makes a conditional offer of employment to the applicant.

(c) If, after determining that an applicant is a finalist or after making a conditional offer of employment to an applicant, the agency determines that the applicant has been arrested or charged but not convicted of a criminal offense and the criminal case is not actively pending, the agency shall not use that information as a basis for not making an offer of employment or for withdrawing the conditional offer of employment.

(d) If, after determining that an applicant is a finalist or after making a conditional offer of employment to an applicant, the agency determines that the applicant has had a criminal conviction expunged or sealed from his or her record, received a pardon, or that charges were dismissed pursuant to successfully completing a deferred judgment or sentence, the agency shall not use that information as a basis for not making an offer of employment or for withdrawing the conditional offer of employment unless, after reviewing the factors in subsection (4) of this section, the agency determines that the applicant should be disqualified for the position.

(e) Nothing in this section prevents an agency from considering criminal history information that the applicant voluntarily provides.

(4) Except as provided in subsection (6) of this section, if, after determining that an applicant is a finalist or making a conditional offer of employment to an applicant, the agency determines that the applicant has been convicted of a crime, the agency shall consider the following factors when determining whether the conviction disqualifies the applicant for the position:

(a) The nature of the conviction;

(b) Whether there is a direct relationship between the conviction and the position’s duties and responsibilities and the bearing, if any, the conviction may have on the applicant’s fitness or ability to perform one or more such duties and responsibilities, including whether the conviction was for unlawful sexual behavior as listed in section 16-22-102(9), C.R.S ., and whether the duties of employment would place a co-worker or the public in a vulnerable position;

(c) Any information produced by the applicant or produced on his or her behalf regarding his or her rehabilitation and good conduct;  and

(d) The time that has elapsed since the conviction.

(5) Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, the provisions of this section apply to the office of the governor.

(6) If, at any stage in the hiring process, the department of corrections or the department of public safety determines that the applicant has been convicted of a crime, the department must consider the factors listed in paragraphs (a) to (d) of subsection (4) of this section when determining whether the conviction disqualifies the applicant for the position.

Ninja's summary

Employers for the public sector hiring for the State of Colorado are prohibited from performing a background screening until the agency has determined that the applicant is a finalist for the open position or receives a conditional job offer. Inquiries into an applicant’s criminal history cannot be made at the initial stage of the state employment application process.

Colorado Revised Statutes 8-2-126: Employer use of consumer credit information.

The full text of the Colorado Revised Statute 8-2-126 can be found at https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/sites/default/files/Employment%20Opportunity%20Act.pdf.

Ninja's summary

An employer can only obtain a credit report on a potential candidate after they have issued that applicant a conditional offer of employment. Additionally, an employer may NOT obtain or use an applicant’s credit report or credit history in making a hiring decision unless there is a substantial relationship between the credit history and the position’s duties and qualifications.

An employer obtaining a credit report must provide to the applicant a notice that a credit report will be obtained.

An employer can only obtain a credit report using the “substantially related” exception after a conditional offer of employment is made if:

  • (1) State or Federal Law authorizes the employer to obtain a credit report; or
  • (2) The position is for a federally insured financial institution; or
  • (3) The position is for executive and management personnel or officers with a fiduciary relationship to the employer.

The offer of employment may be revoked upon review of the credit report only if there is a substantial relationship between credit history and the position’s duties and qualifications.

Update: Feb 2018

Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA):

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) is a set of federal guidelines that helps regulate hiring practices. The FCRA was created to ensure privacy, accuracy, and fairness of consumer information. The FCRA accomplishes this by having a set standard for collecting, disseminating, and using consumer information.

Employers obtaining consumer reports for background screening purposes must follow specific procedures. For example, employers must disclose to the candidate what the background screening is, what information it includes, and how they intend to use it. They must obtain the written consent of the candidate before obtaining a background screening. They may not misuse the information contained in the background screening. There are also strict procedures an employer must follow should they decide not to hire a potential candidate based on the information in the background screening.

The purpose of the FCRA is to help protect employers, employees, and potential job candidates.

Disclaimer

This material is time sensitive. Contact us for updates. This information is subject to frequent change through legislative and court action.

All materials in this page and accompanying information are for general educational purposes and not intended to provide legal, scientific or medical advice. Consult with an appropriate professional to address specific issues.

No additional “Ban the Box” state or local laws to consider. Please keep in mind that laws are always changing, and we recommend that you seek legal counsel for the most up-to-date legal information.


Update: Feb 2018

Disclaimer

This material is time sensitive. Contact us for updates. This information is subject to frequent change through legislative and court action.

All materials in this page and accompanying information are for general educational purposes and not intended to provide legal, scientific or medical advice. Consult with an appropriate professional to address specific issues.

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Gunnison $0.00
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Summit $0.00
Teller $0.00
Vanderburgh $0.00
Washington $0.00
Weld $0.00
Yuma $0.00

Colorado Consumers Have the Right to Obtain a Security Freeze

You may obtain a security freeze on your consumer report to protect your privacy and ensure that credit is not granted in your name without your knowledge, except as provided by law. You have a right to place a security freeze on your consumer report to prohibit a consumer reporting agency from releasing any information in your consumer report without your express authorization or approval, except as the law allows.
You will not be initially charged to place a security freeze on your consumer report. However, you will be charged a fee of no more than ten dollars to temporary lift the freeze for a period of time, to permanently remove the freeze from your consumer report, or when you make a subsequent request for a freeze to be placed on your consumer report. As well, you may be charged a fee of no more than twelve dollars to temporarily lift the freeze for a specific party.

The security freeze is designed to prevent credit, loans, and services from being approved in your name without your consent. When you place a security freeze on your consumer report, within five business days you will be provided procedures for the temporary release of your consumer report to a specific party or parties or for a period of time after the security freeze is in place. To provide that authorization, you must contact the consumer reporting agency and provide the proper information regarding the third party or parties who are to receive the consumer report or the period of time for which the report shall be available to users of the consumer report.

A consumer reporting agency that receives a request from a consumer to temporarily lift a security freeze on a consumer report shall comply with the request no later than three business days after receiving the request.

A security freeze does not apply to circumstances where you have an existing account relationship, and a copy of your report is requested by your existing creditor or its agents or affiliates for certain types of account review, collection, fraud control, or similar activities.

You should be aware that using a security freeze to take control over who gains access to the personal and financial information in your consumer report may delay, interfere with, or prohibit the timely approval of any subsequent request or application you make regarding new loans, credit, mortgage, insurance, government services or payments, rental housing, employment, investment, license, cellular phone, utilities, digital signature, internet credit card transaction, or other services, including an extension of credit at the point of sale. You should plan ahead and lift a security freeze either completely if you are shopping around, or specifically for a certain creditor a few days before actually applying for new credit.

You have the right to bring a civil action or submit to binding arbitration against a consumer reporting agency to enforce an obligation under the security freeze law after following specified dispute procedures and having received the necessary notice.

KEY COURT DECISIONS
Court Case Issue Outcome Employer Limitation/ Action

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