Credit Reports and the FCRA
Service : Compliance Services
Question: If I’m not running credit reports, does the Fair Credit Reporting Act still apply?
Response & Analysis:
Yes. A credit report is only one of several checks that fall under the definition of a “consumer report.” The Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”) applies anytime a company procures a “consumer report” on an applicant or employee. Section 603(d) of the FCRA defines a consumer report as:
In addition to a credit report, this definition of a consumer report would cover many other types of background information, such as criminal history checks, employment verifications and license checks. So even if you choose not to run a credit report on an applicant or an employee, many of the other background checks you run – including just public record information – will fall under the definition of a “consumer report.” Thus, you are subject to the requirements of the FCRA even if you do not run credit reports.
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