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Employment Background Screenings & Disney

On Behalf of | Dec 20, 2013 | Consumer Protection

In the recent class action suit, Culberson v. The Walt Disney
Company, Robert L. Culberson, (“Culberson”) filed suit against the
defendant alleging it knowingly violating the Fair Credit Reporting
Act (“FCRA”).  The complaint states that The Walt Disney
Company, (“Disney”) accessed Culberson’s credit file during the job
application process and failed to
comply with the FCRA
after it took adverse action against
Culberson.  Under the law, after making the decision not to
hire Culberson based on the information contained in his credit
file, Disney had an obligation to provide Culberson with an adverse
action letter, a copy of his credit report that was used during the
application process and a copy of his rights under the

The premise of the law is that every consumer/job applicant
should be entitled to an opportunity to respond to adverse action
that may be taken against them based on information reported in
their credit file; perhaps the information used to deny the
applicant is inaccurate, outdated, expunged, or just does not
belong to the consumer in the first place.  The purpose of the

employment background check laws
are to protect consumers from
being denied a job opportunity because of inaccurate

In this case, Culberson applied for a job with Disney and during
employment background check
, his report showed a criminal
conviction from an assault and battery charge dating back to 1998,
when the consumer was just 19 years old.  The conviction had
been expunged from his record in 2010 but was still reporting on
his credit file.  Because Disney failed to notify Culberson
that it was accessing his credit file during the application
process, Culberson had no opportunity to see his report prior to
the access and correct the inaccuracy.  Furthermore after the
information was removed, Disney still refused to reevaluate his

When signing a contract with the background check agency, Disney
agreed to take care of the adverse action reporting and all
requirements under the FCRA
.  Despite this agreement with
the agency, Disney’s conduct was in complete disregard for the
letter of the law.  It failed to provide a pre-adverse action
notice to Culberson nor did it send him written notice of the
adverse action.  Employers need to understand the reason for
this policy and comply with the law if they want to avoid FCRA

If your rights have been violated under the FCRA during an employment
background check
and you would like to discuss your situation
in greater detail, contact SmithMarco P.C. for a free case