On November 24, 2014, a class action complaint was filed on behalf of the plaintiff, Abdul Kadir Mohamed, against (1) Uber Technologies, Inc., (2) Rasier LLC (purportedly a wholly owned subsidiary of Uber), and (3) the background screening company that Uber used. The lawsuit, filed in the United States District Court (San Francisco), claims that these defendants violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) – the federal law that governs employment background screening – and that these defendants (companies) similarly violated related California and Massachusetts laws. California laws were also cited due to Uber and Rasier having principal places of business in California, while Massachusetts laws were also named in this complaint, as the plaintiff is a resident of Massachusetts.

This proposed class action lawsuit alleges that Uber, et al., violated the FCRA and similar California and Massachusetts laws by neglecting to provide job applicants with compliant pre-adverse and adverse action notices in accordance with Federal and state laws. For the purpose of FCRA violations, this complaint is attempting to create a class going back 5 years to November 24, 2009, for all individuals who either applied for employment and/or were in fact employed by Uber and/or Rasier, and who also did not receive proper FCRA-mandated disclosures.

This class action complaint also cites the Federal Trade Commission guidance that the FCRA-mandated disclosure requirements for employment background screening purposes are applicable, whether an individual is an employee or an independent contractor (FTC Advisory Opinion to Allison, 02-23-98). This is an important issue, as companies (employers) are required to provide compliant FCRA disclosures, whether an applicant is a “regular” employee or just an independent contractor.

The intricacies of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), as it governs employment background screening, with its specific and onerous employer disclosure requirements, make it essential for companies to work with a reliable background screening company to help them navigate these complex FCRA regulations.

Posted by: Rudy Troisi. President, Reliable Background Screening.