New Illinois Law Prohibits Employers’ Use of Credit Checks in Hiring

The credit history of a job candidate will be off limits to Illinois employers as of January 1, 2011.  Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signed the bill into law on Tuesday, thereby prohibiting employers from making employment decisions–including the decision whether to hire–based on the individual’s credit history.  (See Press Release).

Hawaii, Oregon, and Washington already have similar laws.  And bills are pending in 16 state legislatures that would enact similar prohibitions.  The recent push is likely related to the high unemployment rate–more candidates inevitably will have credit issues as a result of unemployment. Therefore, there are more voices to speak out against employers’ use of credit histories for employment decisions. 

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