Effective October 2013, Nevada will become the tenth state to strictly limit the circumstances in which employers may use credit reports in making employment decisions. Like employers in all other states, Nevada employers must follow the notice and authorization requirements of the federal Fair Credit Practices Act (FCRA), to make sure applicants and employees know when their credit reports are used and have an opportunity to correct errors in those reports. (For more information on what the FCRA requires, see our article Can Prospective Employers Check Your Credit Report?)
However, Nevada employers may check an applicant’s or employee’s credit report or consider credit history in making job decisions only in limited situations.
Nevada Restrictions on Using Credit Information
Unless an exception applies (see below), Nevada employers may not do any of the following:
- request, require, suggest, or cause any employee or applicant to submit a consumer credit report or other credit information as a condition of employment
- use, accept, refer to, or inquire about an employee’s or applicant’s consumer credit report or other credit information
- discipline, fire, discriminate against, or deny job benefits to an applicant or employee based on that person’s credit report or other credit information, or because that person refused to provide a credit report or other credit information, or
- retaliate against an employee or applicant who complains about the employer’s violation of the law.
A consumer credit report is defined as any written, oral, or other communication of information by a consumer reporting agency (such as a credit bureau) bearing on someone’s credit standing, credit worthiness, or credit capacity. Credit information means any information relating to credit and derived from a person’s consumer credit report.
All Nevada employers are covered by this law, even those with only one employee.
Exceptions for Certain Employers and Employees
Although Nevada generally bans employers from considering credit history in making employment decisions, there are a handful of exceptions. An employer may require applicants and employees to authorize the employer to view their credit reports if the employer is required or authorized by state or federal law to use credit history for employment purposes.
The law also allows an employer to use credit reports or credit information if the employer reasonably believes that the employee or applicant has engaged in specific activities that violate state or federal law.
Nevada law also allows employers to check or use credit history if that information is reasonably related to the job for which the employee or applicant is being evaluated for hire, promotion, transfer, or retention. Credit information will be deemed reasonably related to jobs that involve:
- responsibility for, or the care, custody, and handling of, money, financial accounts, corporate credit or debit cards, or other assets
- access to trade secrets or other confidential information
- management or supervisory responsibility
- the direct exercise of law enforcement authority as an employee of a state or local law enforcement agency
- responsibility for, or the care, custody and handling of, another person’s personal information
- access to another person’s personal financial information
- employment with a financial institution that is chartered under state or federal law, including subsidiaries or affiliates, or
- employment with a licensed gaming establishment.