State criminal history background checks search criminal records from numerous counties throughout the state. This background search for Utah records will pull criminal history from all counties that report into the repository of the Bureau of Criminal Identification of the Utah Department of Public Safety. Such counties may include Salt Lake County, Utah County, Davis County, and Webster County.
Employers in Utah frequently use Utah background checks to flesh out their employee screenings—usually after running a county criminal check. At backgroundchecks.com, we process state criminal history checks for 30 states, including Utah.
Employers wishing to conduct Utah background checks need to be aware of laws that restrict the use of these checks for hiring purposes. Below, we have outlined the key restrictions and how they may impact your company.
Criminal History Checks
Utah is unique because the law prohibits most employers from requesting criminal history for employees or applicants. Private businesses can run FBI background checks but cannot request state or county criminal history checks. Only a few businesses—such as childcare entities, companies providing care to vulnerable adults, businesses handling financial matters, or employers filling jobs related to national security—are permitted to conduct Utah background checks.
Utah law states employees or candidates must obtain their own background checks and provide the records to their employer or prospective employer. Employees or candidates can also submit a release form that allows their background check records to be sent to a third party—in this case, the employer.
You can either request your candidates submit a release with their application or direct them toward this Utah background check service to order their own check. As an employer, you are still allowed to require your candidates to submit to criminal history checks; you just need to go about the process differently than businesses in most other states.
Ban the Box
In 2017, Utah’s governor signed a bill banning the box for public employers. The law means government employers cannot ask questions about criminal history—or run background checks—until after an initial interview. If there is no job interview, employers must wait until making a conditional offer of employment to inquire about criminal history. There are a few exceptions, including jobs that involve working with children and law enforcement positions. The box has also yet to be banned for private employers at the state level or in any local Utah jurisdiction.
Employers in Utah are technically allowed to ask about arrest records. This Utah background check will not include arrest history information. Because arrest history is not a mark of guilt—and is, therefore, a contentious form of data to use in employment hiring decisions—backgroundchecks.com omits this information for your protection.