Hertz Sued for Allegedly Violating Federal Background Check Law, According to Job Applicant’s Legal Team

SAN FRANCISCO, June 9, 2015 – The Hertz Corporation, Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group, Inc. (“Hertz”), and Sterling Infosystems, Inc. are accused in a new federal lawsuit of violating the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) during criminal background checks of Hertz job applicants, the law firm Outten & Golden LLP and the nonprofit organization Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area announced today.

Filed in San Francisco federal court, the nationwide class action lawsuit alleges that Hertz and Sterling failed to comply with FCRA’s notice requirements prior to taking adverse actions against job applicants and that Sterling has failed to notify job applicants when it furnishes Hertz with negative background check reports and to follow strict procedures to ensure the accuracy and completeness of those reports.

Filed on behalf of plaintiff Peter Lee, of Richmond, Calif., and all similarly situated applicants for employment with Hertz, the complaint also alleges that Hertz has failed to provide job applicants with appropriate disclosures and obtain authorization in writing prior to procuring background checks for employment purposes.

Mr. Lee, whose employment offer with Hertz was rescinded based on a background check report, said, “I’m hoping to help ensure that Hertz and Sterling follow the law, so that people who want to come work for Hertz have a fair chance.”

Mr. Lee is represented by Jahan C. Sagafi and Katrina L. Eiland, of Outten & Golden LLP, and Meredith Desautels and Stephanie Funt, of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area. The legal team seeks to represent the proposed nationwide class of Hertz job applicants.

Katrina L. Eiland, of Outten & Golden LLP, said, “The FCRA provides important protections for employees and job seekers. Companies must comply with strict requirements before obtaining and using background check information for employment purposes. Hertz’s practice of refusing to hire applicants without giving them a chance to review, let alone dispute or provide more information about, their background check results, deprives job seekers of their rights.”

Stephanie Funt, of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area, said, “The FCRA requires that background checks will be conducted in a manner that is fair to individuals, with particular attention to privacy, accuracy, and the appropriate use of reported information. The complaint alleges that Hertz’s and Sterling’s conduct shows willful disregard for these obligations.”

Hertz job applicants who wish to report their experiences or learn more about the lawsuit should visit www.hertzbackgroundchecklawsuit.com. The site allows job applicants interested in learning about and protecting their rights to contact plaintiffs’ counsel.

The case is “Lee v. The Hertz Corporation, et al.,” Case No. 3:15-cv-02545, in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

Media Contacts: Katrina L. Eiland, Outten & Golden LLP, 415.638.8800, keiland@outtengolden.com; Candice Francis, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area, 415.543.9444 ext. 216, cfrancis@lccr.com.