California DOB Redaction Issue Continues

Posted: October 03, 2022

We’ve been closely following developments in California that significantly impact how criminal records are reported for background checks. In September of 2021, California began removing dates of birth (PII) from their public access terminals in the courthouse and from online court records that are accessible to the public. The new legislation, designed to prevent identity theft, has made things very difficult for consumer reporting agencies (CRAs) over the past year, including Info Cubic.

As a result of the California legislation to remove PII from court records, there have been extensive delays, along with a massive backlog of requests in many California counties. Unfortunately, there is no statewide repository in California, so consumer reporting agencies (CRAs) are at the mercy of the courts’ schedules in each California county.
 
State Bill 1262 

In February 2022, State Senator Steven Bradford (D-35th District) introduced SB 1262, designed to amend Section 69842 of the California Government Code and alleviate the problem. It read (in part): “Publicly accessible electronic indexes of defendants in criminal cases shall permit searches and filtering of results based on a defendant’s driver’s license number or date of birth, or both.”
 
State Bill 1262 was designed to help background screening companies that conduct background checks for employment purposes. These companies usually search court records for identifiers—including date of birth or driver’s license number, along with the subject’s name, so they can ensure they are looking at the correct records to comply with accuracy requirements under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).
 
Legislation Vetoed by Newsom

 
On September 29, 2022, California Governor Newsom vetoed the legislation, leaving this issue hanging for the time being. This is unfortunate news, but the Info Cubic team will continue to do everything possible for our clients, so California County criminal searches can be completed as quickly and accurately as possible.
 
The background screening industry strongly opposes removing identifiers from search databases since it significantly hinders their ability to confirm the identities of job candidates accurately and efficiently. If you have questions about California background check delays or regarding the California legislation, contact us at (877) 360-4636.

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