“BANNING THE BOX” IN LOS ANGELES « Law Offices of Timothy Bowles | Top Employment Law Firm in Los Angeles


City Tightens Its Rules on Improper Use of Criminal Records to Deny Employment

Effective January 22, 2017, the City of Los Angeles’ (City) Fair Chance Initiative for Hiring Ordinance (FCIHO) prohibits employers with 10 or more employees located or doing business in the City from inquiring into a job applicant’s criminal history by any means, including on the application form or during the job interview, unless and until the employer extends a conditional offer of employment. See, Ban the Box in The City of Los Angeles (January, 2017).

The City’s Department of Public Works, Bureau of Contract Administration recently published two FCIHO-related documents:

  1. Notice to Rescind Employment Offer (Rescission Letter). Whenever an employer considers rescinding the conditional job offer based on an unsatisfactory criminal background check, it must provide a copy of this Rescission Letter or its equivalent along with the criminal history report or any other any documentation used in its decision-making to the applicant. The applicant must then be allowed a minimum of five business days from receipt of the Letter to provide additional information or documentation in his/her favor, at which time the employer must reassess and notify the applicant in writing of its final decision.
  2. Office of Wage Standards Individual Assessment and Reassessment Form (Form OWS). The employer must enclose a completed Form OWS with the Rescission Letter. This assessment must include a “description of the criminal conduct and why it is of concern” as well as the connection between the applicant’s criminal history and the “risks inherent in the duties” of the job position.

For additional assistance understanding and implementing the City’s FCIHO, please contact Tim Bowles, Cindy Bamforth or Helena Kobrin.

Cindy Bamforth

March 23, 2017