Hiring temps onto your staff? Still check their backgrounds

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in Employment Background Check,Hiring,Human Resources

Quick quiz: If you hire temporary employees, what does your contract with the temp agency say about performing background checks? Is it your duty? Is it theirs?

Too many employers don't know. They assume a temp agency wouldn't send someone with a criminal background.

Don't make that mistake. Ensure that your temp agency properly screens applicants before they step foot on your property. Obtain those assurances in writing.

Also, when considering temps for permanent jobs, treat them just like any other candidate. Run them through the same reference and background checks.

Recent case: After working for 90 days as a temp payroll clerk at a tech company, Teena Rodriguez was hired as an employee. The company didn't interview Rodriguez or check her background; it assumed the temp agency conducted a reference check. It didn't.

Over the next two years, Rodriguez em-bezzled $1.3 million from the organization.

The tech company sued the temp agency for negligence, saying the agency failed to check the temp's references. The problem: The temp agency contract said nothing about checking references.

As a result, the court sided with the temp agency, saying it didn't owe the employer any duty of care that wasn't stated in the contract. (Vtech Communications, Inc. v. Robert Half Inc., No. C00-1827CV; A117619, Oregon Ct. App., 2003)

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