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H.R. 645 (113th): Equal Employment for All Act

The Equal Employment for All Act modifies the Fair Credit Reporting Act to prohibit employers from using consumer credit reports in making hiring decisions or negative job decisions.

Congressman Steve Cohen [D-TN9] introduced the bill, arguing that “We should be doing everything in our power to help people find jobs during these tough economic times – not hinder them.” lists 43 organizations that support the bill including the AFL-CIO, NAACP, NOW, and Consumer Action.

Senator Elizabeth Warren [D-MA] has introduced a similar bill in the Senate. Her version lacks the financial responsibility exceptions of this bill. Congressman Cohen also introduced the bill during the 112th Congress, but it was not enacted.

This bill provides the following exemptions: A) employment that requires national security or FDIC clearance, B) employment with state or local government agencies that requires the use of a consumer credit report, C) supervisory, managerial, professional, or executive positions at financial institutions, or D) when otherwise required by law.

The prohibition applies even when the individual consents to the use of the report by an employer. The bill also does not change disclosure requirements to consumers employers access these reports.

Last updated Oct 15, 2014. View all GovTrack summaries.

The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress.

2/13/2013--Introduced. Equal Employment for All Act - Amends the Fair Credit Reporting Act to prohibit a current or prospective employer from using a consumer report or an investigative consumer report, or from causing one to be procured, for either employment purposes or for making an adverse action, if the report contains information that bears upon the consumer's creditworthiness, credit standing, or credit capacity.

Makes exceptions to such prohibition for employment: (1) which requires a national security or Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) clearance; (2) with a state or local government agency which otherwise requires use of a consumer report; or (3) in a supervisory, managerial, professional, or executive position at a financial institution.