The simple answer to the question is – NO. California Labor Code Section 1024.5, which took effect on January 1, 2012, prohibits most employers, including prospective employers, from obtaining credit reports for employment purposes.
However, there are certain exceptions. For instance, certain financial institutions may still obtain a credit check for existing and/or prospective employees.
Other instances when an employer may request a credit check is if the position for whom the report is sought is one of the following:
1. A managerial position;
2. A position in the state Department of Justice;
3. A sworn peace officer or other law enforcement position;
4. A position for which the information contained in the report is required by law to be disclosed or obtained;
5. A position that involves regular access to specified personal information for any purpose other than the routine solicitation and processing of credit card applications in a retail establishment;
6. A position in which th eperson is or would be a named signatory on the employer’s bank or credit card account, or authorized to transfer money or enter into financial contracts on the employer’s behalf;
7. A position that involves access to confidential or proprietary information; or
8. A position that involves regular access to $10,000 or more of cash.
In addition, the Labor Code requires the employer to give written notice to the employee or prospective employee for whom a credit check is being sought. The written notice must also inform that person of the specific reason for obtaining the report.