The beginning of the end? States are beginning to prohibit one controversial employee screening practice

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

by: Adam Santucci

The practice of employers demanding access to applicant social media and particularly Facebook pages is still creating quite a stir. The risks of this practice are increasing and have been so great that several states have proposed legislation that would make it illegal.

A Maryland state agency was the first to gain national attention for adopting the practice as part of its applicant screening process, and interestingly, Maryland is now the first state to officially pass legislation prohibiting employers from demanding access to social media pages.

Legislation is also pending in California, Delaware, Pennsylvania and other states that would make this practice illegal. Typically, the proposed legislation bans the practice and contains anti-retaliation provisions.

The best practice for those companies who have decided to take the risk and incorporate this type of social media screening into their hiring process is to be very aware of and familiar with any new or existing laws in the appropriate state.

For more information, check out the McNees Wallace & Nurick LLC Labor and Employment blog at: