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Employer Credit Checks May Soon Be Illegal

Cold Highway

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The good news is that the cycle may not continue for much longer. Many states and even the federal government are taking steps to ensure that a candidate’s bad credit report isn’t issued to evaluate a prospective employee, especially since the report was never intended for that particular use.
Businesses dont do credit checks for the sake of doing them. They do them to avoid hazard employees. My credit was checked at my current job..why because I handle alot of money and credit through out my day. You dont want to hire someone who has defaulted on loans, mortgages, had repossessions, has a ton of debt and so fourth.

Employer Credit Checks May Soon Be Illegal | Credit/Debt | Money/Investing | Mainstreet
 

randel

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Businesses dont do credit checks for the sake of doing them. They do them to avoid hazard employees. My credit was checked at my current job..why because I handle alot of money and credit through out my day. You dont want to hire someone who has defaulted on loans, mortgages, had repossessions, has a ton of debt and so fourth.

Employer Credit Checks May Soon Be Illegal | Credit/Debt | Money/Investing | Mainstreet
this is good news...very few employers have need for this kind of info, and it shouldnt disqualify you from getting a job....the only exceptions i could understand would be those who would be handling cash/negotiables on a daily basis.
 

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this is good news...very few employers have need for this kind of info, and it shouldnt disqualify you from getting a job....the only exceptions i could understand would be those who would be handling cash/negotiables on a daily basis.
If there was any evidence that the system was being abused I would agree with you. It really needs to be left up to the employer and the employee. If the employer requires a credit check I am sure it is for good reason. If the employee consents to the check, they they are in mutual agreeance and neither party is harmed. If I was an employer that had a need to credit check employees, I would be harmed if it was outlawed. If I has a job applicant and didn't want my credit check, I would simply opt out of applying for a job with that particular employer, no harm done to either party. Most of the time when people are overly secretive, there is a reason, they have things to hide. Personally, as an employer, although I dont require credit checks, I don't want employees who have things to hide.

In my situation, all my employees are given keys to our shop because from time to time they have a need to work early or late or on weekends. I have at times had problems with employee theft. About 10 years ago recorded an employee stealing money out of our cash register. I fired him and procecuted and he did 20 days in jail. Oddly enough the guy came back to our shop a couple of years ago and applied for a job. After he filled out the application he asked to use our phone so that he could call the probation officer who was shuttling him around to apply for jobs. After 8+ years, they guy was obviously still involved in criminal activity and didn't even have the self respect to avoid applying for a job at a place that he stole from.

I once had an employee who sued me for a false injury. Eventually I found out that she did the same at her last 3 places of work and so had her husband. Stupid me for not checking references. Fortunantly, after I won the first hearing, I talked to her attorney who then ultimately dropped her as a client.

The next thing you know it is going to be illegal to get references from past employers or to ask for personal references or to request school transcripts or to do a criminal background check or to do work place drug testing. Ultimately, this all leads to being required by law to hire the first person who applies, regardless if he/she is the best qualified or meets any of the job requirements.
 
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randel

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If there was any evidence that the system was being abused I would agree with you. It really needs to be left up to the employer and the employee. If the employer requires a credit check I am sure it is for good reason. If the employee consents to the check, they they are in mutual agreeance and neither party is harmed. If I was an employer that had a need to credit check employees, I would be harmed if it was outlawed. If I has a job applicant and didn't want my credit check, I would simply opt out of applying for a job with that particular employer, no harm done to either party. Most of the time when people are overly secretive, there is a reason, they have things to hide. Personally, as an employer, although I dont require credit checks, I don't want employees who have things to hide.

The next thing you know it is going to be illegal to get references from past employers or to ask for personal references or to request school transcripts or to do a criminal background check or to do work place drug testing. Ultimately, this all leads to being required by law to hire the first person who applies, regardless if he/she is the best qualified or meets any of the job requirements.
i disagree with your premise....as i stated, if you are going to be working a job that has you handling cash/negotiables on a regular basis, i could agree, the employer would have a valid reason to want a credit report...if you are working in a box factory, making corrugated boxes/lids, or working on an assembly line, i fail to see why an employer would have need of such personal info....and i don't buy the idea that because you don't want your credit run, that you have something to hide.....many folks just prefer that private info remain private, and the fewer people with access to such personal info, the better...especially with rampant identity theft.
 

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i disagree with your premise....as i stated, if you are going to be working a job that has you handling cash/negotiables on a regular basis, i could agree, the employer would have a valid reason to want a credit report...if you are working in a box factory, making corrugated boxes/lids, or working on an assembly line, i fail to see why an employer would have need of such personal info....and i don't buy the idea that because you don't want your credit run, that you have something to hide.....many folks just prefer that private info remain private, and the fewer people with access to such personal info, the better...especially with rampant identity theft.
One's credit history relates to character. Why is the Federal government going to tell employers what they can consider when they are interviewing candidates? Ridiculous.
 

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i disagree with your premise....as i stated, if you are going to be working a job that has you handling cash/negotiables on a regular basis, i could agree, the employer would have a valid reason to want a credit report...if you are working in a box factory, making corrugated boxes/lids, or working on an assembly line, i fail to see why an employer would have need of such personal info....and i don't buy the idea that because you don't want your credit run, that you have something to hide.....many folks just prefer that private info remain private, and the fewer people with access to such personal info, the better...especially with rampant identity theft.
But how many box companies are requiring credit checks of production employees? If a company has a problem with not having enough job applicants to agree to a credit check, that company would obviously change it's policy and stop requiring credit checks. If the company has plenty of applicants willing to submit to a credit check, they what is the harm? If an individual is a privacy freak, they they just simply don't have to apply for jobs that require credit checks. I dont require credit checks, they are welcome to apply for a job at my company.

And why would we want to outlaw a company that has a legitimate need for credit checks from checking credit?

Companies checking employee credit sounds like a non-issue to me.

The way it is going, the government is going to soon ban colleges for asking for SAT/ACT test scores.
If
 

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I had to have a credit check to work at SOE on video games. Now, when I got the job at the FBI, I could understand their credit check and background check. But Sony? WTF?

And, I fail to see how it relates to character in the slightest.

I'm kind of on the fence about this. As someone who has a ****ty credit history, I don't see how it relates to character in the slightest. People make bad decisions sometimes, that doesn't mean they shouldn't ever be able to get another job.

However, I'm all for allowing employers to hire/fire whomever they want for whatever reason they want. As long as the employee is aware of the check and agrees to it, I guess I can't see any legal reason for the practice to be stopped.
 

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I had to have a credit check to work at SOE on video games. Now, when I got the job at the FBI, I could understand their credit check and background check. But Sony? WTF?

And, I fail to see how it relates to character in the slightest.

I'm kind of on the fence about this. As someone who has a ****ty credit history, I don't see how it relates to character in the slightest. People make bad decisions sometimes, that doesn't mean they shouldn't ever be able to get another job.

However, I'm all for allowing employers to hire/fire whomever they want for whatever reason they want. As long as the employee is aware of the check and agrees to it, I guess I can't see any legal reason for the practice to be stopped.
You have got to be kidding me. Bad credit, in most, not all, instances, has everything to do with character. Ah, as I carefully read your post, I see you have ****ty credit. Now I understand your position.
 

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You have got to be kidding me. Bad credit, in most, not all, instances, has everything to do with character. Ah, as I carefully read your post, I see you have ****ty credit. Now I understand your position.
Please do explain how. I know how it can be seen that way with SOME, and I would agree. But certainly not most.
 
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MaggieD

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Please do explain how.
Bad credit doesn't come from one bad decision. It comes from a number of them. It comes from deciding to buy something(s) that you can't afford and then not paying for it. Your credit score is made up of a number of different components. It's dramatically effected when you don't pay your bills on time.

People who buy things they can't afford to pay for are irresponsible. I hasten to add here that there are good reasons why someone's credit goes bad -- medical bills, unforeseen circumstances, job loss and more. (These things can, as a rule, be explained away by a formal letter in one's credit file.) But for the garden variety 600 credit score, it's all about paying bills late. Or, worse, simply stiffing a creditor. What is responsible about that? And why would I want someone like that working for me?
 

randel

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One's credit history relates to character. Why is the Federal government going to tell employers what they can consider when they are interviewing candidates? Ridiculous.
please explain to me how your credit history relates to your charachter?
 

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please explain to me how your credit history relates to your charachter?
Repeating my earlier post:

Bad credit doesn't come from one bad decision. It comes from a number of them. It comes from deciding to buy something(s) that you can't afford and then not paying for it. Your credit score is made up of a number of different components. It's dramatically effected when you don't pay your bills on time.

People who buy things they can't afford to pay for are irresponsible. I hasten to add here that there are good reasons why someone's credit goes bad -- medical bills, unforeseen circumstances, job loss and more. (These things can, as a rule, be explained away by a formal letter in one's credit file.) But for the garden variety 600 credit score, it's all about paying bills late. Or, worse, simply stiffing a creditor. What is responsible about that? And why would I want someone like that working for me?
Personally, I can't believe two people in a row wouldn't get that. It's quite telling.
 

randel

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But how many box companies are requiring credit checks of production employees? If a company has a problem with not having enough job applicants to agree to a credit check, that company would obviously change it's policy and stop requiring credit checks. If the company has plenty of applicants willing to submit to a credit check, they what is the harm? If an individual is a privacy freak, they they just simply don't have to apply for jobs that require credit checks. I dont require credit checks, they are welcome to apply for a job at my company.

And why would we want to outlaw a company that has a legitimate need for credit checks from checking credit?

Companies checking employee credit sounds like a non-issue to me.

The way it is going, the government is going to soon ban colleges for asking for SAT/ACT test scores.
If
please define 'legitimate need' for me...for the majority of businesses, imo, there is no need...i equate this to utility companys asking for your social security number...they have no legitimate need for it, and that is not what the number was created for.
 

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Repeating my earlier post:



Personally, I can't believe two people in a row wouldn't get that. It's quite telling.
the majority of your last paragraph shoots that theory to pieces....people can be disqualified for reasons beyond their control.....you can't judge someone based soley on a credit report.
 

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Bad credit doesn't come from one bad decision. It comes from a number of them. It comes from deciding to buy something(s) that you can't afford and then not paying for it. Your credit score is made up of a number of different components. It's dramatically effected when you don't pay your bills on time.

People who buy things they can't afford to pay for are irresponsible. I hasten to add here that there are good reasons why someone's credit goes bad -- medical bills, unforeseen circumstances, job loss and more. (These things can, as a rule, be explained away by a formal letter in one's credit file.) But for the garden variety 600 credit score, it's all about paying bills late. Or, worse, simply stiffing a creditor. What is responsible about that? And why would I want someone like that working for me?
That's not how it always happens. In fact, I'd venture to guess that the majority of people use credit with every intention of paying it back. But sometimes **** happens. Sometimes, significant others run up your credit. Sometimes people promise you things and you make decisions based on that, and they don't follow through. Sometimes, you use credit and then lose your job. Sometimes, you get divorced and all the hassel and expense that can come along with that. Sometimes unexpected expenses arise. (such as medical, as you mentioned... but sometimes it's home repairs, or vehicle repairs, etc) It's VERY easy to find oneself in a hole you can't get out of even though you were doing everything you could to do the 'right' things.

I just find it a very 'holier than thou', self-righteous attitude to assume that everyone who has a bad credit history is there because they're bad people. It's been 10 years since my bankrupcy and I've worked my ass off to pay back the debt, limit current debt, and make sure that every payment is there on time and nothing is missed, and my credit isn't checked too often (because every check makes my score go down). After 10 years of keeping my nose clean, making very good money and doing the best I can, I STILL get turned down for credit. Sometimes payments are late not because I chose to send them late, but due to other factors - like not getting the bill at all or not getting it in time due to the fact that I move every 6 months or so. Or, setting up a payment schedule with my bank, but not realizing that the payment due date actually fluctuates a bit and after 6 months, suddenly my payments are being sent late - inadvertantly.

Not to mention the fact that even if people DID screw up royally and **** up their credit by doing something "bad", that doesn't mean they aren't legitimately trying to fix things. People make mistakes, they shouldn't be held to the fire for them for the rest of their lives.
 

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You have got to be kidding me. Bad credit, in most, not all, instances, has everything to do with character. Ah, as I carefully read your post, I see you have ****ty credit. Now I understand your position.
I suspect that a lot of people have a fear that they would be rejected not because of having truely bad credit, but for simply having a few minor blemishes on their record. Personally, my credit score is not that great, it's not terrible by any means, but it is slighly lower than average because I have a lot of revolving credit that I use for business purposes - but the credit bureos punish people who have a large amount of revolving debt. That has NEVER kept me from purchasing anything, it hasn't kept me from getting credit cards or a HELOC (obviously) or business loans or car loans or house loans. I simply explain that I make use of lots of revolving credit for my business.

The only actual flaw on my credit report is a one "over 30 days" four years ago on my home morgage. I have close to 40 perfect credit account records dating back over 25 years ago and most of them are paid off.

I would seriously doubt if any employer would consider that as being "bad credit" even though it is not perfect credit.

I tend to agree that truely bad credit is an indication of character. I once had an employee that had something like 15 accounts on his credit report, none of them were ever paid. In all honesty, just from working with the guy, if someone would have asked me about his character, I would not have given him a positive rating, even if I didn't know about his terrible credit history. He not only had a character issue, he also had a work ethic issue. About a year after the guy quit, Paypal froze my account because that guy had made some fraudulent sales on ebay. Paypal tracked it back to me because a year earlier the guy had used my computer for a paypal transaction and paypal apparently tracks IP addresses. I got the problem resolved with paypal so it was no big deal, but my point is that the guy PROVED that he was of low character by committing fraud. So at least in his case, his bad credit report was a reflection of his character.

Most certainly a history of frequently not honoring financial contracts is an indication of poor character.
 

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That's not how it always happens. In fact, I'd venture to guess that the majority of people use credit with every intention of paying it back. But sometimes **** happens. Sometimes, significant others run up your credit. Sometimes people promise you things and you make decisions based on that, and they don't follow through. Sometimes, you use credit and then lose your job. Sometimes, you get divorced and all the hassel and expense that can come along with that. Sometimes unexpected expenses arise. (such as medical, as you mentioned... but sometimes it's home repairs, or vehicle repairs, etc) It's VERY easy to find oneself in a hole you can't get out of even though you were doing everything you could to do the 'right' things.

I just find it a very 'holier than thou', self-righteous attitude to assume that everyone who has a bad credit history is there because they're bad people. It's been 10 years since my bankrupcy and I've worked my ass off to pay back the debt, limit current debt, and make sure that every payment is there on time and nothing is missed, and my credit isn't checked too often (because every check makes my score go down). After 10 years of keeping my nose clean, making very good money and doing the best I can, I STILL get turned down for credit. Sometimes payments are late not because I chose to send them late, but due to other factors - like not getting the bill at all or not getting it in time due to the fact that I move every 6 months or so. Or, setting up a payment schedule with my bank, but not realizing that the payment due date actually fluctuates a bit and after 6 months, suddenly my payments are being sent late - inadvertantly.

Not to mention the fact that even if people DID screw up royally and **** up their credit by doing something "bad", that doesn't mean they aren't legitimately trying to fix things. People make mistakes, they shouldn't be held to the fire for them for the rest of their lives.
I acknowledge whole-heartedly that there are many very legitimate (and SAD) reasons that people's credit gets screwed up. And those surely aren't the ones I'm talking about. For every good reason for bad credit, there's a perfectly-predictable-outcome decision that's caused credit to go south. Not to focus on you in particular, but I can't help it. One doesn't "set up payment schedules with their banks, they set up payment schedules with their creditors and their creditors tap their bank accounts. It's difficult (very difficult) for me to believe that after ten years of diligence you haven't been able to clean up your credit history. Bankruptcies disappear. Being careless in notifying your creditors of your new address....not filing a Change of Address form with the post office...these things speak to your intent to pay your bills. Some people with plenty of money have absolutely AWFUL credit because they just don't bother to pay them. That's why part of your credit score has to do with your "willingness to pay."

I'm not saying being with bad credit are bad people. I'm saying they've made bad decisions. I'm saying that an employer has every right to consider a credit score when evaluating the character of a person they're considering hiring.
 

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I suspect that a lot of people have a fear that they would be rejected not because of having truely bad credit, but for simply having a few minor blemishes on their record. Personally, my credit score is not that great, it's not terrible by any means, but it is slighly lower than average because I have a lot of revolving credit that I use for business purposes - but the credit bureos punish people who have a large amount of revolving debt. That has NEVER kept me from purchasing anything, it hasn't kept me from getting credit cards or a HELOC (obviously) or business loans or car loans or house loans. I simply explain that I make use of lots of revolving credit for my business.

The only actual flaw on my credit report is a one "over 30 days" four years ago on my home morgage. I have close to 40 perfect credit account records dating back over 25 years ago and most of them are paid off.

I would seriously doubt if any employer would consider that as being "bad credit" even though it is not perfect credit.

I tend to agree that truely bad credit is an indication of character. I once had an employee that had something like 15 accounts on his credit report, none of them were ever paid. In all honesty, just from working with the guy, if someone would have asked me about his character, I would not have given him a positive rating, even if I didn't know about his terrible credit history. He not only had a character issue, he also had a work ethic issue. About a year after the guy quit, Paypal froze my account because that guy had made some fraudulent sales on ebay. Paypal tracked it back to me because a year earlier the guy had used my computer for a paypal transaction and paypal apparently tracks IP addresses. I got the problem resolved with paypal so it was no big deal, but my point is that the guy PROVED that he was of low character by committing fraud. So at least in his case, his bad credit report was a reflection of his character.

Most certainly a history of frequently not honoring financial contracts is an indication of poor character.
You know I agree with you. As to your situation, one important thing that is reflected in your credit report is your USE of your AVAILABLE credit. Let's say I have 5 different credit cards with a combined limit of $25,000. If I'm using $23,000 of that credit on a pretty regular basis, my credit score will be dinged BIG time. I'll bet that's what happening to you -- not BIG time, but dinged.
 

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I acknowledge whole-heartedly that there are many very legitimate (and SAD) reasons that people's credit gets screwed up. And those surely aren't the ones I'm talking about. For every good reason for bad credit, there's a perfectly-predictable-outcome decision that's caused credit to go south. Not to focus on you in particular, but I can't help it. One doesn't "set up payment schedules with their banks, they set up payment schedules with their creditors and their creditors tap their bank accounts. It's difficult (very difficult) for me to believe that after ten years of diligence you haven't been able to clean up your credit history. Bankruptcies disappear. Being careless in notifying your creditors of your new address....not filing a Change of Address form with the post office...these things speak to your intent to pay your bills. Some people with plenty of money have absolutely AWFUL credit because they just don't bother to pay them. That's why part of your credit score has to do with your "willingness to pay."

I'm not saying being with bad credit are bad people. I'm saying they've made bad decisions. I'm saying that an employer has every right to consider a credit score when evaluating the character of a person they're considering hiring.
you admit that it is a flawed way to judge someone, but yet have no problem with a potential employer still using it? i just don't understand that
 

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you admit that it is a flawed way to judge someone, but yet have no problem with a potential employer still using it? i just don't understand that
Where did I admit it is a flawed way to judge someone??? It's not. People who do not have "hardship" reasons to pay bills late cannot be trusted to honor their word. It's as simple as that. Doesn't make them bad people. Makes them irresponsible and not trustworthy.
 

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Businesses dont do credit checks for the sake of doing them. They do them to avoid hazard employees. My credit was checked at my current job..why because I handle alot of money and credit through out my day. You dont want to hire someone who has defaulted on loans, mortgages, had repossessions, has a ton of debt and so fourth.

Employer Credit Checks May Soon Be Illegal | Credit/Debt | Money/Investing | Mainstreet
So if you go to college to get a degree you were told all throughout high school would get you a job, accrue student loans to get that degree, and then can't get a job that will pay both the rent and for your loans when you get out . . . an employer should be able to see that, so that they can deny you a job that will help you pay your loans back?
 

rivrrat

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I acknowledge whole-heartedly that there are many very legitimate (and SAD) reasons that people's credit gets screwed up. And those surely aren't the ones I'm talking about. For every good reason for bad credit, there's a perfectly-predictable-outcome decision that's caused credit to go south.
Agreed.

Not to focus on you in particular, but I can't help it. One doesn't "set up payment schedules with their banks, they set up payment schedules with their creditors and their creditors tap their bank accounts.
It's called online bill paying, through my bank. I set up the payments through my bank, they send the checks to whomever I tell them to, when I tell them to send them.

It's difficult (very difficult) for me to believe that after ten years of diligence you haven't been able to clean up your credit history. Bankruptcies disappear.
Of course it's better than it was, but like I said... I do still get turned down. In fact, I couldn't get an apt in San Diego without my ex-boyfriend being listed as a co-renter. That was 7 or so years after a bankruptcy. (probably 7, because I had just gotten my clearance)

Anywho, my credit is still bad enough to warrant "co-signers" for some things, and outright denials in other cases. It's not so bad that I couldn't buy my car in 2007, though. So yes, it's improved.

Being careless in notifying your creditors of your new address....not filing a Change of Address form with the post office...these things speak to your intent to pay your bills.
No, it speaks to my gypsy nature. Sometimes I don't HAVE a forwarding address. :lol: Sometimes the moves are sudden and I don't have time to immediately notify all creditors. I do notify them as soon as I am able, but occasionally I miss one.

Some people with plenty of money have absolutely AWFUL credit because they just don't bother to pay them. That's why part of your credit score has to do with your "willingness to pay."

I'm not saying being with bad credit are bad people. I'm saying they've made bad decisions. I'm saying that an employer has every right to consider a credit score when evaluating the character of a person they're considering hiring.
And I just think it can be a poor way of evaluating someone. Quite frankly, when I'm hiring someone... the last damn thing I'm concerned about is their ****ing credit history. I can't even imagine a reason why I would care.

As for the employer having "every right", I don't necessarily disagree. I personally believe that employers should be free to hire and fire people for ANY reason at all. But, I do think that a credit check is perfectly pointless.
 

imagep

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But sometimes **** happens. Sometimes, significant others run up your credit. Sometimes people promise you things and you make decisions based on that, and they don't follow through. Sometimes, you use credit and then lose your job. Sometimes, you get divorced and all the hassel and expense that can come along with that. Sometimes unexpected expenses arise. (such as medical, as you mentioned... but sometimes it's home repairs, or vehicle repairs, etc) It's VERY easy to find oneself in a hole you can't get out of even though you were doing everything you could to do the 'right' things.
Yes, sometimes **** happens, we ALL understand that. But if *** happens over and over and over again, something is wrong. Some people bring bad **** upon themselves. Many people regularly participate in self destructive behavior.

I had another employee who insisted that he HAD to have a sports car. He couldn't afford a nice one so he went through four crappy cars during the two years he worked for us. He would "burn rubber" leaving our parking lot and generally drove like a madman. Naturally the car's didn't last too long. He was always broke because he was always having to get them repaired or having to buy another one from a "buy here pay here" lot. The guy was in his late 40's, I assume his attraction to sports cars was some type of mid life crises, but regardless, he regularlly engaged in self destructive behaviors. Come to think about it, the other employee I described went through several junky cars also.

I have had employees who would always keep some type of ripoff loan obligation at a paycheck advance place or at a title loan company. It amazed me how they would worry so much about paying their 600% per year interest rate loan, but yet they wouldn't bother to pay a 9% car loan or a 7% mortage payment or a 16% credit card. They were self destructive. One guy I twice payed of his check advance loan and took the cost of paying it off out of his paycheck at the same rate of interest that he had to pay. The third time that he got a check advance loan I left him stuck with it. The guy would have to get those loans because he would skip work and wouldn't get a full paycheck. Again, he acted self destructively. Deep down in side, he wanted to live a all f***ed up life.

In almost every instance where my employees have displayed self destructive behavior, they carried those issues to the workplace. Poor attendance, poor production, poor quality.

By the way, most of our employees have been excellent. I don't want anyone to think that we only hire loosers. He hire more winners than loosers. Maybe I SHOULD start checking credit reports for new hires, it would save me a lot of $$$. You guy's talked me into it.
 

MaggieD

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So if you go to college to get a degree you were told all throughout high school would get you a job, accrue student loans to get that degree, and then can't get a job that will pay both the rent and for your loans when you get out . . . an employer should be able to see that, so that they can deny you a job that will help you pay your loans back?
An employer should be able to deny you a job for any reason whatsoever.
 

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Where did I admit it is a flawed way to judge someone??? It's not. People who do not have "hardship" reasons to pay bills late cannot be trusted to honor their word. It's as simple as that. Doesn't make them bad people. Makes them irresponsible and not trustworthy.
"I acknowledge whole-heartedly that there are many very legitimate (and SAD) reasons that people's credit gets screwed up. And those surely aren't the ones I'm talking about. " that sentence in and of itself, acknowledges that the system is flawed, but yet, you support letting employers use this info.
 
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