Big Business Fights To Preserve Employers' Use Of Background Checks

In the aftermath of the World Trade Center attacks, it's become commonplace for employers to rely on background checks to vet potential employees. But with allegations of employer abuses, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission now is weighing whether to limit employers' rights to use background checks to make hiring decisions.

Tens of millions of Americans have criminal records, though by law they can't be denied employment unless the nature of the offense conflicts with job duties. But research by the National Consumer Law Center, an advocacy organization, shows that third-party companies performing background checks routinely fail to accurately interpret and report relevant information.