Pennsylvania Background Checks

Health Street's line of background checks in Pennsylvania delivers fast, meticulously researched data on an applicant’s criminal history, references, education and employment. We pride ourselves on providing what employers need to inform their decisions about the people they hire. Pennsylvania employment background checks give companies the assurance that their new hires have been fully vetted and won’t pose a risk. Verify if someone is being honest with you before you hire them - with Pennsylvania background checks from Health Street.

What Background Checks in Pennsylvania does Health Street offer?

Criminal Background Check Packages

Health Street’s criminal background check packages always start with a Social Security Number Trace. From there, you can add specific background checks, choose from one of our most popular packages, or build your own.

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Includes:
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National Crime Index
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Sex Offender Registry
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Do Not Fly list
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Includes:
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Everything in Triple Database (above), plus:
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Courthouse Repository (State and/or County level)
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Resume Verification services to check a person’s job history, degrees, and references starting at $39
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DOT Background Check and driver screening services to ensure DOT compliance starting at $39

Why Health Street For Pennsylvania Background Checks?

Performing background checks in the Keystone State involves knowing and following state rules and regulations which may stipulate what information can be taken into account when making hiring decisions. Requirements vary by state.

Performing background checks on your own is risky and can lead you into legal trouble. Hiring a background check company, known as a Credit Reporting Agency or CRA, is highly advisable. A credit reporting agency’s job is to stay abreast of Pennsylvania background check laws. Reputable CRA’s help you avoid pitfalls such as:

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Not uncovering criminal activity
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Revealing too much information, including things that by law cannot be considered during the hiring process

The risk of uncovering too much information in a background check is significant. Laws such as the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) mandate that certain protected information cannot be considered by employers when making hiring decisions. When hiring in Pennsylvania, it is crucial to use a CRA that understands the complexity of background check laws in Pennsylvania.

Background Check

Background Checks Protect Employers and Their Staff in Pennsylvania

In Pennsylvania, state law limits when background checks may be conducted on applicants, as well as what information gleaned from the background check can be used to make a final hiring decision.

A criminal history check is just one of five background checks that may be conducted on a potential new hire. The other checks validate education, licensure, experience, and state tax compliance. The most basic criminal history check is available through State Police Pennsylvania Access to Criminal History (PATCH), but employers may conduct more detailed background checks through private companies if they require more information.

A background check is only permitted once a conditional offer is extended to an applicant. Unless an exemption has been granted under the state’s Fair Chance Hiring Policy, employers are not able to conduct background checks before this conditional offer.

If a background check comes back with no criminal history, the employer is free to extend a formal offer of employment. However, if there are felony or misdemeanor charges on the background check, the employer must do their due diligence, and determine whether the charges affect the candidate’s suitability for the position. They can do this by asking the applicant to undergo an assessment, or by asking for an explanation of the charges. If the applicant is found to be unsuitable for the position, the employer must inform them in writing.

One new bill that affects background checks and employee hiring in Pennsylvania is the Clean Slate bill, which was signed into law in June 2018. This law “allows minor, non-violent cases to be automatically sealed from public view after time has passed without conviction of a felony or a misdemeanor.” Misdemeanors are sealed from public view after 10 years without reoffence, and for summary offenses, that time drops to 5 years.

Relevant Statistics on Crime in Pennsylvania

As an employer, it can be difficult to decide between hiring when an otherwise ideal candidate has a felony or misdemeanor charge on their record. However, it’s your responsibility to protect not only your customers but also your staff.

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In 2018, Pennsylvania had an estimated 39,192 violent crime incidents, with the majority of those registered as aggravated assaults.
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Property crime state-wide occurred more than 190,000 times, with 13,000 of those incidents related to motor vehicle theft.
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Overall, arrests decreased by 16% from 2012 to 2016, although 12.7% more offenders entered state supervision within the same time frame.

DOT Background Screening Services

If your business hires truck drivers, DOT regulations require that you reach out to prior employers as well as check the FMCSA Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse for violations. You also need to run a Motor Vehicle Report (MVR) to ensure that your drivers have a clean, safe driving record.

Health Street takes this work off of your hands and stores your Pennsylvania background checks securely in the same convenient online portal where you can manage your DOT drug testing and random pool. We contact prior employers, check the Clearinghouse on your behalf, and report it all back to you in a comprehensive background check report, that includes:

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Conducting historical research of Pennsylvania driving record
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Contacting prior employers from before the Clearinghouse began in January 2020.
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Checking the FMCSA Clearinghouse for drug and alcohol violations reported on or after January

Resume Review and Verification Checks

When evaluating a job applicant, the first thing a hiring manager tends to look at is their resume. But what if the schools attended, degrees earned, job titles held, and other credentials were embellished, exaggerated, or outright fabricated? Before making that hire, you can rest easy knowing that Health Street can add resume verification to our Pennsylvania background checks.

Resume fraud is unfortunately all too common in Pennsylvania. Our resume verification services provide a definitive check on everything listed on your applicant’s resume. This includes:

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education verification to confirm the degrees and certifications stated.
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employment history to check that they have held the jobs claimed
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professional license verification to confirm they have the certifications required.

Be sure that the person you want to hire is really who they say they are by ordering resume verification services from Health Street.

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Citations

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“Background Check Procedures.” Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Office of Administration – Human Resources, https://www.hrm.oa.pa.gov/hire-sep/filling/Documents/background-check-procedures.pdf
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“HB 1419 | Clean Slate.” ACLU Pennsylvania, 2017-2018 Session, https://www.aclupa.org/en/legislation/hb-1419-clean-slate#:~:text=House%20Bill%201419%20allows%20minor,offenses%2C%20it%20is%205%20years.
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“Employers – What You Need to Know When Hiring Under the New PA Law Which Limits Availability of Criminal Record Information.” Meyer Unkovic Scott Attorneys at Law, 4 September 2018, https://www.muslaw.com/new-pa-law-limits-availability-of-criminal-record-information/
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Guerin, Lisa. “Pennsylvania Law on Employer Use of Arrest and Conviction Records in Hiring.” NOLO, https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/pennsylvania-law-employer-use-arrest-conviction-records-hiring.html
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“Bill Information: Regular Session 2017-2018 House Bill 1419.” Pennsylvania General Assembly, https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/billInfo/billInfo.cfm?sYear=2017&sInd=0&body=H&type=B&bn=1419
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“2018 Crime in the United States by State, 2018.” Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), https://ucr.fbi.gov/crime-in-the-u.s/2018/crime-in-the-u.s.-2018/tables/table-5
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“Criminal Justice Statistics and Trends: PA Crime Trend Report (2012-2016).” Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency,” https://www.pccd.pa.gov/Justice-Research/Pages/Criminal-Justice-Trends.aspx