Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Advice from Glenn Duker, lawyer and solicitor, on how to lawfully request a criminal record check

It is understandable that when recruiting, you want to employ the most suitable candidate for the job. In some cases, reviewing a prospective employee’s criminal past is essential prior to hiring him/ her. There are certain things you must do when requesting a criminal record check legally.Glenn Duker, lawyer and solicitor, has years of experience and is well placed to guide you through the steps.

Make sure the conviction is relevant

A conviction should be relevant to the inherent requirements of the job before you ask for the prospective employee to disclose criminal record information.For example, it is fair to check for a criminal history of fraud if you are employing for the finance industry.This is so that a complaint against you can be avoided.

Collect the information with the candidate’s consent

You must explain to the candidate why the criminal check is necessary. For example, this could be in relation to the position, or the nature of your business. You should also advise the candidate what they are not required to disclose and obtain the candidate’s written consent. Following this, be sure to give the candidate an opportunity to respond and explain why their criminal record is not relevant to the job, if they do not wish to supply their criminal history.

Ensure the conviction is not spent

‘Spent’ means that the conviction no longer forms part of the person’s publically accessible criminal record, because a specified period of time has passed with no further convictions.
In all States and Territories other than Victoria and South Australia, it is illegal to discriminate against someone with a ‘spent conviction’.

Have a process in place to keep the information secure

You must take reasonable steps to protect the information from the below points:

  • Misuse
  • Loss
  • Unauthorised access
  • Modification
  • Disclosure
For more information on your obligations regarding obtaining a criminal legal check, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Glenn Duker, solicitor and lawyer.

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