Every state has its own laws that regulate or limit the use of criminal history checks for employment-related decisions. South Dakota is more lenient than many other states when it comes to background check regulations and limitations. Any employer ordering this South Dakota state background check should still be aware of any laws they may encounter along the way.
Below, we have compiled a list of the most relevant background check laws enforced in South Dakota.
Ban the Box
South and North Dakota are among the few states in the country that do not currently have any ban the box legislation. Whether at the level of state law or city and county ordinances, there is no legislation on the books in South Dakota that bans criminal history inquiries from job applications or delays background checks until later in the interview process.
Employers should keep an eye on new legislative developments, as the ban the box movement is continuing to pick up steam in other states. In 2015, legislators in South Dakota discussed the possibility of bringing ban the box to the state.
Arrest and Conviction Records
South Dakota employers are legally permitted to inquire into any arrest or conviction information that has not been expunged or sealed. Unlike other states, where the use of arrest histories is strongly limited in employment settings, South Dakota has few laws on the subject. However, the state’s Division on Human Rights does advise employers to look at conviction and arrest records on a case-by-case basis.
Employers should only inquire about these criminal records—or take adverse action against the candidates—if the arrests or convictions are “substantially related” to the job and its responsibilities. The South Dakota Department of Labor echoes these recommendations in its Pre-Employment Inquiry Guide.