Can an employer hire you and then say they can’t because you didn’t pass the background check?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Can an employer hire you and then say they can’t because you didn’t pass the background check?

I got hired by a pizza chain. However, after going to orientation, I was informed that I didn’t pass the my background check. My boss said that I was hired but now HR called me and apologized and sent me a check for orientation. Are there any legal grounds to that I can pursue over this?

Asked on March 31, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Utah

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

The fact is that most employment is "at will" which means that, as a general rule, a company can set the conditions of work much as it sees fit absent some form of legally actionable discrimination. Therefore, an employer can rescind a job offer based on an applicant's criminal history. That having been said, federal law that prohibits job discrimination. So employees and applicants are protected from policies or practices that among other things disproportionately screen out members of a particular race or ethnicity. Since arrest and incarceration rates are so much higher for African Americans and Latinos, a company/business that adopts a policy of excluding all applicants with a criminal record might be guilty of discrimination. Additionally, since each state has different laws in terms of using an person's criminal history in hiring, you may want to check with your state's department of labor since many of these laws are changing.

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Yes, they can do this, unless you had an actual written employment contract guarantying you employment--if you did and the terms of the contract would bar, this, they have to honor the contract. (If they don't, you could sue them for breach of contract.)
However, if you don't have a written employment contract, you are an employee at will. If you are an employee at will, you may be terminated--whih includes having a job offer rescinded--at any time, for any reason, including failing a background check. Basically, without a contract, you have not enforceable rights to a job.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption