Florida Tenant Screening Companies: FCRA


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Florida Tenant Screening Companies

Florida tenant screening companies can provide assistance to Florida property management companies and Florida community associations with compliance under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).  Once an association has an applicant for a rental or property sale, they may then proceed with a background check.

Fair Credit Reporting Act Requirements

The FCRA requires a signed disclosure and authorization from the applicant granting the right of the association or the property management company to order a background check.  The format of the disclosure and authorization is specific.  The form cannot include a disclaimer, release of liability or any other wording.  Both the disclosure and authorization can be combined in a single form.  The form needs to be signed by the applicant before ordering the background check.

State Requirements in addition to the FCRA

The FCRA is a federal law.  Several states have enacted additional laws pertaining to background checks.  These states include California, Hawaii, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York and Washington.  Applycheck includes New York, Maine, California and Washington state rights on our form.  The Summary of Your Rights under the Fair Credit Reporting Act which must be provided to each applicant notifies consumers of these state laws.   Florida tenant screening companies can provide the FCRA Rights statement.

Florida and the FCRA

Florida does not have additional laws regarding background checks.  And Florida does not restrict the use of criminal records.  In Florida, criminal records are public unless sealed.  Therefore, Florida tenant screening companies can provide statewide criminal and county criminal records.

Florida Department of Law Enforcement

According to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE), a person can apply to the FDLE requesting to seal or expunge their criminal history.  FL Statutes  s.943.0585 and s.943.059 detail the requirements to seal a criminal history.  First the person must request a Certificate of Eligibility.  Then the court of jurisdiction must issue an order.  Florida allows a person with a sealed criminal history to deny they have arrest records. If the criminal records are sealed, a Florida tenant screening company will not be able to provide the records to a Florida community association or Florida property management company.