Legal Blog

Telebriefs®: New Jersey Governor Signs “The Opportunity to Compete Act”

Last week the Governor of New Jersey, Chris Christie,  signed what is called “The Opportunity to Compete Act”. Essentially this is another ban the box statute, similar to the one recently passed in Baltimore City. This limits any New Jersey employer or any business doing business in New Jersey to inquire into a particular applicant’s criminal record. This law will become effective March 1, 2015. The New Jersey ban the box legislation is similar to other sorts of ban the box statutes in different jurisdictions with some differences. It prohibits employers from asking about an applicant’s criminal record until after the following hiring steps are completed.

  1. The employers have conducted an interview.
  2. The employer has made a determination that the applicant is already qualified at least minimally for the job and selected the applicant as its first choice.

However, a difference in this statute unlike the Baltimore statute, New Jersey employers  can make these criminal inquires prior to making a formal offer of employment. But they are prohibited from inquiring into, like in many statutes, expunged criminal records or arrests that do not result in a criminal conviction and certain other things that would also preclude the employer from looking into the background of the applicant. To read more about ” The Opportunity to Compete Act” and other recent Labor and Employment laws discussed on the Telebrief on August 13, please click here.  You can also access past Telebriefs® with Howard Kurman Esq. by clicking here.

About Telebriefs®

Geared to executives with employee relations responsibilities (HR directors, supervisors, managers, business owners), Labor and Employment Telebriefs® are information-packed 30 minute briefings via the telephone. Telebriefs® provide information and insights to help executives stay current with latest workplace law developments and in front of trends so as to enable proactive policy making and management .

On the 2nd and 4th Wednesday of each month, from 9 – 9:30 am ET, join Offit Kurman Labor & Employment Chair Howard Kurman, as he discusses developments occurring over the past two-three weeks that will most significantly impact employers nationwide. The focus is squarely on the practical. Why is this event significant for employers? What are the lessons to be learned or actions taken?

These twice-monthly teleconferences are an easy way to stay current and compliant with the latest Labor and Employment law developments that will significantly affect you and your company.  Our guarantee: You will learn something useful, on every call!

If you have any questions regarding ban the box or labor and employment issues please contact Howard Kurman:

About Howard Kurman

Howard Kurman website hkurman@offitkurman.com | 410.209.6417 Howard K. Kurman is Chair of the firm’s Labor & Employment Department. Mr. Kurman regularly counsels clients on all aspects of proactive employment/labor issues. He represents employers ranging in size from as small as 20 employees to those employers with geographically disparate locations consisting of over 4,000 employees. Mr. Kurman assures, through regular contact with his clients, that they promulgate and maintain the most effective employment policies that will, to the extent possible, minimize their legal exposure in today’s litigious workplace.