Can our apartment complex force my father to give his social security number for a background check? We are trying to add him to our lease.

When paying my rent today, I told the office that I wanted to add my father to the lease. They stated that he had to give his SS# for a background check, or he couldn’t stay here. There are other ways to do a background chek, Driver Liscense #, etc. I live in Alabama, what are the ramifications of this, if they force the issue? Is legal action possible?

Asked on July 1, 2009 under Real Estate Law, Alabama

Answers:

N. K., Member, Iowa and Illinois Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

They have the right to ask for the SS# since the background check includes a credit check as well as a criminal background check. A driver's license would only provide limited background information. This is the reason why a SS# is used for background checks for obtaining credit, applying for a job, and renting an apartment.


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