Good Intentions, Bad Plan

Client: How’s things been this past month?

Ann: Oh, you know how they say, “the road to hell is paved with good intentions?”

Client (tentatively): Uhh… I think so, why?

Ann (already hearing colors after her fourth cup): Lemme tell you about Michigan. . .

Client: Michigan?

Ann: Yeah. Michigan.

I believe the legislators had the best intentions at heart. 

The plan was to redact birthdates from criminal records, protecting individuals’ Personal Identifiable Information.
However, I don’t believe the legislators in Michigan understood the consequences, until the Professional Background Screeners Association (PBSA) took action. 

Redacting birthdates from criminal records takes away the most important piece of identifying information we use on a daily basis to determine if Jason Robertson (Wanda Smith, Douglas Fox—give me a name, any name) committed the crime. 

Since I started in this business in 1996

It’s always been a name and date of birth match to determine if the criminal record we are looking at belongs to your applicant. Michigan’s decision to redact birthdates would have hobbled our work like nothing else. 

In addition, it would make it harder for a lot of people to get jobs. It would have been a major hurdle for employers and job seekers alike. And that’s something no one needs right now. 

Without that birthdate

We couldn’t tell you if one of the 500 Jason Robertson’s with criminal records are your applicant.

What if you have a common name, a John Smith with a DOB of 01/01/1975 and he says “it’s not me—it’s my birthday twin”? 

We call the court to match an address, a phone number, the last four digits of a social security number. 

I had that happen within the last year for a client in Albuquerque, NM. I called the court and matched the applicant’s address.

I called my client and confirmed his identity for her. Then I asked my client, what the heck? She laughed and told me, “He was truly just hoping to get away with it.”

Good news?

Because the PBSA mounted a major offensive, Michigan backed down from its July 1, 2021, implementation date of removing the DOB’s. The new target is 01/01/2022, and that gives us time to keep the pressure on and teach the legislators about why this is a bad idea. 

Cutting Edge will be there to be certain you get the best service, price and information in your pre-employment background checks. 

Call us today (760) 423-6408. We’ll pick up on the first ring.