Juvenile Records in Hiring Decisions – California Assembly Bill 1843

As of January 1, 2017, California employers will be prohibited by law from asking job applicants to disclose information about any juvenile convictions they may have.  This includes juvenile records pertaining to arrests, detentions or court dispositions.

Late last year, Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Assembly Bill 1843. This bill amends the California Labor code, section 432.7, to make it illegal for employers to use certain juvenile records in hiring decisions.

Like many bills that are created, AB 1843 does have some exceptions. Health facilities may inquire about juvenile crimes if the final ruling was that the crime was a felony or misdemeanor involving sex crimes or controlled substances within five years prior to applying for the job. Even with these exceptions, the law still makes it illegal for employers to inquire into any job applicant’s sealed juvenile records.

Currently, California Labor Code Section 432.7 makes it unlawful for public and private sector employers to consider both arrests/detentions that didn’t result in convictions, and referrals to or participation in diversion programs, or convictions that have been dismissed or ordered sealed.  This assembly bill will amend and broaden the off limits information. 

Under AB 1843, an employer may not ask applicants or employees to disclose information about an arrest, detention, processing, diversion, supervision or court disposition that occurred while the applicant or employee was under the juvenile court.  Also, employers may not obtain or use as a factor in determining employment any record that occurred while a person was under the jurisdiction of the juvenile court.

The background check and employment laws in California are different than most states.  It is imperative that California employers understand the unique factors pertaining all aspects of the employee life cycle.  For more information on Assembly Bill 1843, please click here.