Background screening

Purpose

The purpose of this Policy is to establish the University’s background screening requirements, procedures, and policy guidelines for candidates for employment and volunteers to protect the University community and assets.

Policy

Lynn University seeks to provide a safe and professional environment for students, employees, and visitors. To accomplish this, Lynn University may require applicants, volunteers and interns to submit to a verification of credentials, employment history, criminal history, Social Security, and address verification check. Additionally, credit checks will be conducted for employees who will have responsibility for handling University and other funds, making financial transactions hold other positions requiring fiscal responsibility, or those whom have access to personal credit information. Driving records will be reviewed for all applicants whose job duties require driving. Any applicant that refuses to submit to a background check may be declared ineligible for employment. The background screens shall comply with all federal, state and local laws including, but not limited to, the Federal Fair Credit Reporting Acts.

Definitions

Applicant- a current, former, or prospective employee who submits information to be considered for positions at the University, including individuals not currently employed by the University and current University employees seeking promotional or transfer opportunities to different positions.

Background Screen - means the process of gathering and reviewing criminal history records, financial history records, and/or motor vehicle records.

Credit History Screen - means the process of gathering and reviewing financial history records or information furnished by any court of civil law, credit reporting agency (credit report), or a third party vendor in the business of obtaining and providing credit reports.

Criminal Background Screen - means the process of gathering and reviewing criminal history records or information furnished by a criminal justice agency or third party vendor in the business of obtaining and providing criminal history records relating to an individual’s criminal convictions. A criminal history record does not include an individual’s conviction records that have been sealed by court order. Criminal records include in-state, out-of-state and international criminal history, including misdemeanor and felony convictions.

Motor Vehicle Check - means the process of gathering and reviewing motor vehicle and/or driver’s license records or information, including motor vehicle records from any state where the individual has resided.

Reference Check - means the process of contacting individuals directly or through a third-party vendor, including current and former employers, companies, and educational institutions that may reasonably be relied upon to provide relevant information regarding fitness for employment.

Verification Screens - means the process of verifying an applicant’s education, professional licenses, academic credentials, and work experience.

Volunteer - means any uncompensated individual who is authorized by a University department, division, or unit to perform humanitarian, charitable or public services on behalf of the University, or to gain personal or professional experience in specific endeavors. By definition, Volunteers perform services without promise, expectation or receipt of any compensation, future employment or any other tangible benefit.

Vulnerable Population Programs - means University–sponsored programs and activities, including but not limited to academic programs and camps, serving minors or at-risk adults.

Procedures/Guidelines

If a criminal history has been reported by the applicant and/or the criminal history background check uncovers potential problems, the Director of Employee Services will consult with the University’s General Counsel to determine the next course of action. Each case will be reviewed and factors will be considered such as, but not limited to, the nature and age of the crime reported, the number of offenses and circumstances of each, the position sought and duties, rehabilitation, the candidate’s employment history, the accuracy of the explanation on the application and references. Only criminal convictions, guilty pleas, and pleas of no contest will be considered in determining an applicant’s suitability for employment.

Background reports will be maintained in the employee or applicant’s secured file. A candidate who is judged not to qualify for a position or is not hired because of the background check may request in writing a copy of the report(s) from Employee Services.

If an applicant, volunteer, and intern disputes the accuracy of any information obtained in a background check, the employee will be referred to the agency that provided the information. A candidate disputing the accuracy of information will have three (3) business days to conclusively demonstrate the inaccuracy of the information obtained in the background check, after which time an employment decision may be made.

Additional Pre-Employment Screening

Some positions require a physical examination, drug screen test, medical interview, psychological examination and/or require a statement from the employee’s personal physician to successfully complete a pending offer of employment. Lynn University incurs full cost of the exams and may include examination, testing and/or immunizations deemed by Lynn University to be appropriate for the particular employment position.

Physicals may be authorized for post-offer, pre-employment applicants if a job has special physical demands, or when a post-offer or pre-employment applicant’s ability to meet the physical demands of the position is in question. Incumbent employees selected for new positions with significantly different demands may also be required to have a physical examination based on the new position’s requirements.

Arrangements will be made by Employee Services for a physical examination to be conducted at a medical facility designated by Lynn University. At the discretion of Lynn University, additional periodic exams or testing may be requested, especially on the occasion of an employee injury in the workplace. The employee or prospective employee must sign a written release of this information to Lynn University.

To learn more about this policy or the supporting procedures, please contact Employee Services.

Policy updated on: Oct. 24, 2018