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I accepted a job with a new company.I was given a start date and told to resign from my current job. My start date was September 23rd. The day before I was to start I received an email from the company saying my background check was incomplete and that my new start date was September 29th. After talking to Human Resources and giving them phone numbers and as much information as I could they still needed more that I did not have. I had to go to Social Security and get a print out of my work history. I paid 136.00 for this and now I'm still waiting to hear back from them. I was originally told that the background check wouldn't be an issue since there are no issues. No criminal history nor even a ticket.

I feel that it very odd that I had to give the company doing the background check all the information. I've had 2 other background checks done this year alone and I didn't have to give any information.They found it on their own. I've now been out of work for almost 2 weeks and still do not know what's going on. Do I have any recourse?

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    Hi Kim, welcome to The Workplace! Unfortunately, this sounds like a legal question, which is off-topic for this site. I recommend consulting a lawyer if you want to know what your legal rights here are. – David K Sep 30 '15 at 18:26
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    I hope all of this communication is written / email, and not over the phone. If it is, print it all out and find thee a lawyer. – Wesley Long Sep 30 '15 at 20:00
  • Scares me! I have an upcoming background-check :S – BSC Sep 30 '15 at 21:37
  • The first thing I would do is contact the company and ask for information. If you do not get the job, you should talk to a lawyer in your jurisdiction. Im not saying you have a legal case, but it doesnt hurt to check. – Keltari Sep 30 '15 at 22:18
  • I always find these types of situations interesting. We always perform background checks prior to making an employment offer. I'd say start interviewing elsewhere immediately. – NotMe Oct 1 '15 at 14:40
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Do I have any recourse?

Not likely.

Unless this hiring company is performing some sort of scam, I can't see where the recourse would come in. Perhaps you'll find out soon if it turns out that there is no real job.

You could notify the HR department and see if they can speed things up so you won't miss any more paychecks. But I can't see it going any farther than that at best.

My company has a pretty extensive background checking process. Recently I lost a good contracting candidate when something happened and it took over four weeks. As can be understood, the contractor chose not to wait that long. I expressed my displeasure far up the management chain, but I can't see where it mattered enough to any of them that I can expect changes to happen.

Note: I'm not a lawyer, and you could certainly choose to consult one. First, you would have to determine who to sue - your new employer (not usually a good career move), or the company performing the background check (unlikely you have any standing with them).

A lesson to others: try hard to wait until everything including background check) is in place before giving your notice to the company you are leaving.

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Before proceeding, who did you pay the $136 to? The social security place or the employer? I honestly never heard of someone having to pay for their own background check. Most companies absorb the cost for background checks. The question is if you had to bring the paper work to them, how would they know you didn't alter it in some way?

With that said, I would do a online search of this company to see if they are extorting money from people with training, background checks, etc, etc and never being hired.

Now there is something you can do: find a new job. It sounds to me like you knew there would be a pre-condition to being hired and unfortunately you haven't met that pre-condition as of yet. With that said, there is probably very little you can do in way of legal action but then again I am not a lawyer and can't directly answer it. If you knew about the prerequisite of being hired, then there is nothing you can sue them just because they "promised" it. If we could sue based on a promise of being hired, promoted, or whatnot, then most companies in the USA would probably be backrupted by now due to a vast majority of their employees suing them because they didn't get the job/raise they were promised.

With that said, a valuable lesson can be learned here. Never go into a position unless you are absolutely sure you got it. If they tell you to go ahead and quit, make it clear that you do not wish to give up your current position until all the paper works are done and you can work on the chosen start date. If they cannot give you that, then tell them thank you for the offer but you can't take it since you don't want to risk losing your current job and not being able to meet the pre-conditions of being hired.

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