Magazine article HRMagazine

When Must an Employer Respond to a Request for Verification of Employment? What Information Must or Can Be Given?

Magazine article HRMagazine

When Must an Employer Respond to a Request for Verification of Employment? What Information Must or Can Be Given?

Article excerpt

Employers receive requests for employment verification for current or former employees from government agencies, mortgage lenders, prospective employers, collections agents and others. Those making the requests usually seek to verify employment dates, wages, the likelihood of continued employment, or eligibility for rehire and reason for termination.

No matter who is requesting the information, only truthful, supportable information should be shared. Many states have laws that provide employers with immunity from defamation claims if truthful information is given in good faith. In addition, signed consent from the employee should be obtained when possible. Some state immunity laws require employers to obtain written consent from employees to be protected from defamation claims.

Requests from government agencies often require compliance, while most other requests do not. Government requests are often made to verify wages for court decisions (such as child support), to uncover fraud, or even to help an employee prove identity theft.

While employers are not required by law to complete requests from mortgage lenders, most choose to assist their employees in this way. …

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