What is the process for disputing background check errors?

Background checks have become faster and more affordable thanks to the rise of digital technology. More employers, educational institutions and landlords than ever before now require background checks before entering into an agreement with an individual. Even those seeking to volunteer at a nonprofit organization may have to undergo a background check before they can do so.

Unfortunately, background checks can sometimes return inaccurate information. For example, some background checks look solely at name matches or birth dates, making the possibility of errors increase substantially. The potential for a background check to turn up misconduct by other people and other inaccurate information is a serious concern. People in Minnesota and Wisconsin might lose out on opportunities due to inaccurate background check results.

Minnesota has limited assistance available

The need for background check regulations in Minnesota is apparent when hearing the case of a man who has repeatedly failed background checks. He has a twin brother who shares his birthday and has a similar name. The twin brother has a criminal record. The brother without any connections to criminal activity has repeatedly lost out on job opportunities. In fact, despite having a letter from the state affirming that, based on his fingerprints, he was not the person convicted of that crime, companies still refused to hire him.

Unfortunately, the state maintains the records in such a way that background checks can pull up erroneous information about people with similar names to others and those who share birthdays. People may need to reach out to state authorities and private background check companies to correct inaccurate information.

Wisconsin is more proactive about errors

Wisconsin does attempt to work with those who have uncovered inaccurate information in background check reports. Individuals losing out on opportunities due to the conviction of someone with the same birthday or a similar name can file paperwork with the state requesting intervention.

Individuals who have failed background checks can challenge their criminal record based on mistaken identity or false matches. The state does not pay for the process of reviewing and potentially updating records. Errors in background check reports can limit someone’s opportunities and impose an unfair burden on them because of the actions of other people. Fighting back against background check issues can benefit those affected and seeking legal guidance can help.

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