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North Carolina Firing Up Ban the Box

If you like your barbecue sauce true North Carolina style, you know it should drizzle, not stick, to what’s in the pit. A recipe isn’t always needed, but the signature style must be there. In a true North Carolina fashion, ban the box laws need to follow those same rules.

Ban the box has made its way to North Carolina. North Carolina’s new executive order restricts how state government employers can use criminal history. The state aims to have “fair chance policies” at state agencies.

Simple Step-by-step Preparation

Starting November 1, 2020, North Carolina state agencies, with some exceptions:

  • Can’t ask job applicants about their criminal histories during the initial stages of the hiring process.
  • Must remove criminal history questions from employment applications.
  • Can conduct a background check at a later stage in the hiring process. But not until an initial job interview has been conducted.
  • Are limited in what criminal records they can consider when hiring. Records they cannot use include:
    • Expunged or pardoned convictions
    • Charges and convictions unrelated to the job
    • Arrests with no conviction
    • Dismissed or “not guilty” charges
  • May not consider an applicant’s criminal history unless it’s job-related and consistent with business necessity, with some exceptions.
  • Must give the applicant a copy of their criminal record, if they get criminal history during the hiring process, and the FCRA’s Summary of Rights.
  • Must give an applicant with a criminal record a reasonable opportunity to explain that record and provide any proof of rehabilitation.

Secret Sauce of the State’s Fair Chance Order

The order only applies to state agencies and state government jobs under the governor’s purview. The order directs the state’s Department of Administration to determine if it should be extended to state contractors.

Private businesses are encouraged, but not required, to comply.

Just like you would consult the great pitmasters, you can get a professional take on the firmly drawn lines for this order. For more information, North Carolina has packed a punch to common questions. As you prepare to bring it all together, check out its frequently asked questions about the order.

Verified Credentials will continue to monitor ban the box in North Carolina.  You may want to consult with your legal counsel if you have questions how this order may impact you.

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