Did You Know: You Can Pull Your Official Employment History for Free?
Vanessa here from AllClear ID. The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FACT Act) is the law that lets you obtain a free credit report from the three credit-reporting agencies every 12 months. You may not know that the FACT Act also lets prospective or current employers gather information about you for background checks. This is a a great tool to know what they're seeing about you - and to check for signs of possible identity theft.
Some credit reporting agencies and investigation companies compile what is known as "investigative consumer reports,” which are used in limited circumstances such as background checks for employment, insurance policies, and rental housing. These reports do not contain information about your credit record that is obtained directly from a creditor or from you. (For example, it won’t have information about a late payment).
Federal law requires your current or prospective employer to get permission from you to conduct the report. The good news is that if the information in the report is used by the employer to make a negative hiring decision, the employer must give the applicant a copy of the report.
We suggest that you be proactive and get a copy of this report once every 12 months, for free, just like your credit report. You can check it to see if someone else with your name has a work history that may be confused with yours, or may be a result of identity theft. You also have the right to correct and dispute inaccurate information in an investigative report, just as with your credit report.
To order your report, check out the LexisNexis Personal Reports site. Its Full File Disclosure has information about your employment history and other background information LexisNexis collects about you. There’s no guarantee that LexisNexis has a file on you however; as it says on its website, “our files would only contain information on you if LexisNexis provided your Employment History Report to an employer.”
Still, ordering is easy. Call 866-312-8075, Sunday through Friday, to start the automated process. You must give your Social Security number, current street number, zip code and date of birth for the report to be started. Have a pen and paper ready to write down the report tracking number, in case you need to call and follow up. If you’re not comfortable giving information over the phone, you can instead download a report request.
It takes 15 days for the report to be processed and mailed to you, and you can call the 866 number above to check on the status. And if there are errors on your employment history report, call the LexisNexis consumer center at 866-820-8977 to get them corrected. And if they're indicative of employment related identity theft, and you're an AllClear ID customer, call us to open up a case.