Credit reporting agencies, like Research Associates, cannot report inaccurate information in your credit report. You have rights under the law, and we will help you enforce those rights.
THE BEST PART IS…
If Research Associates has violated the law, you will get money damages, a fixed credit report, and Research Associates will pay your attorney’s fees and costs. You won’t owe us a dime for our services.
What is Research Associates?
Research Associates is an employment screening background check service based in Westlake, Ohio, just west of Cleveland. Founded in 1953, this agency has been accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 1975 and is a member of the National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS).
Research Associates operates in over 140 countries and offers a variety of business investigation services in addition to employee screening. The agency’s screening services include address history, education/employment verification, criminal records, motor vehicle records, reference interviews, drug screening, and license verification.
Research Associates Customer Service
27999 Clemens Road
Westlake, OH 44145
*If you are not having any luck with AccuFacts, contact us at 888-572-0176. We’re here 24/7!
What is an Employment Screening Background Check?
An employment screening background check is more thorough than a criminal history check. Employment screening background checks are for potential employees – typically for the candidate/s most likely to be hired – to determine if the candidate is suitable for the position.
These background checks help ensure the safety of both employees and clients, as well as the company itself; they ensure that the candidate is indeed fully qualified for the position; and they ensure that a candidate’s criminal history can be evaluated, if necessary. These checks also provide a wealth of information beyond simple criminal histories, such as employment history, residence history, credit reporting, and watch list/sex offender registration.
Research Associates Mistakes on my Background Check
Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act FCRA, you have a legal right to dispute and remove inaccurate information from your credit report. These inaccuracies come in three common forms:
Wrong information – Untrue information such as criminal records, driving records, accounts you did not open, judgments for lawsuits that didn’t involve you, or debts you did not incur can be permanently removed from your credit report.
Duplicate information – Some accounts or transactions may be listed more than once in your credit report, and it’s helpful to ensure that your report is duplicate-free to avoid appearing to have more debt or credit-related problems than you do.
- Old and negative information – Most types of outdated negative credit information, such as foreclosures, judgments, liens, lawsuits, and bankruptcy, can be removed after about seven years.
Research Associates Lawsuit
If you want to know just how unhappy consumers are with Research Associates, take a look at the lawsuits filed against the agency on the Public Access to Court Electronic Records (“PACER”). PACER is the U.S.’s federal docket which lists federal complaints filed against a wide range of companies. Most of the lawsuits filed against Research Associates are based on the Fair Credit Reporting Act. However, PACER numbers may be deceiving. A lot of companies these days have arbitration clauses. Research Associates is one of those companies. Research Associates’ Terms of Service has an arbitration clause. Therefore, lawsuits filed against Research Associates are actually filed in arbitration with the American Arbitration Association. Voluntary arbitration can be an effective way to resolve a dispute. However, forced arbitration is a bad thing. Companies, like Research Associates, want you to give away your rights to file a lawsuit in court because in arbitration, Research Associates has an advantage and can escape accountability.
Dispute Credit Report
Are you one of the 40 million Americans that have a mistake on their credit report? Mistakes on your credit report can be very costly. Along with causing you to pay higher interest rates, you may be denied credit, insurance, a rental home, a loan, or even a job because of these mistakes. Some mistakes may include someone else’s information on your credit report, inaccurate public records, stale collection accounts, or maybe you were a victim of identity theft.
THAT’S NOT ALL…
If you have a mistake on your credit report, there is a process to dispute them. My office will help you pull your credit report and dispute any inaccurate information. If a credit reporting agency violates its obligations under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, you may be entitled to statutory damages up to $1,000.00, plus the credit reporting agency will be required to fix the error. The FCRA also has a fee-shift provision. This means, the credit reporting agency pays your attorney’s fees and costs. Therefore, you will not pay me a penny for my time.
Free Credit Report
You have the right to get a free copy of your credit report, once every 12 months, from each of the three major credit reporting agencies: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.
To order your free credit report:
Mail a request to:
Annual Credit Report Request Service
P.O. Box 105281
Atlanta, GA 30348-5281
THE GOOD NEWS IS…
If you have any issues getting a copy of your free credit report, contact us. Not only will we help you get a copy of all three of your credit reports, but we will also review your credit reports with you to ensure they are accurate.
Frequently Asked Questions About Background Checks
- What do Background Checks Show? Background checks provide a variety of information, such as criminal history, potentially including arrests, dismissed cases, and/or expunged/sealed records; motor vehicle history, such as traffic tickets; employment history; education history, such as high school and postsecondary records; and civil records and references.
- What Kinds of Criminal Records Can be Revealed in a Background Check? Depending on state law, background checks may include misdemeanors, felonies, and/or juvenile offenses. National criminal information, however, is more expensive and time-consuming to gather, as the vast majority of criminal convictions are at the state-level or lower rather than federal. Furthermore, the two “official” nationwide criminal conviction databases are available only to federal employers and law enforcement officials. The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) doesn’t require a deadline for these convictions to be removed from background checks, though some states do have a deadline, such as seven (7) years in California and Illinois.
- Are Arrests That Don’t Result in Conviction Included in a Background Check? Regardless of innocence or guilt, some arrest records may appear in background checks unless they have been legally sealed. For this reason, some organizations do not approve of taking arrest records into account for background checks, though it is indeed legal.
- Do Dismissed Cases Show on Background Checks? A dismissed case may appear on your background check, as a criminal charge will stay on your record even if there was a not-guilty verdict or the charges were dismissed. Fortunately, employers do distinguish between formal convictions and charges that do not amount to convictions.
- Do Expunged or Sealed Records Show on Background Checks? Expunged or sealed records should be absent from a background check report if the candidate successfully petitioned to have said records expunged or sealed. If a candidate has had a conviction expunged, the correct answer to “Have you ever been convicted of a crime?” is “No.”
- Do Traffic Tickets Show on Criminal Background Checks? While simple traffic tickets are civil citations and will not appear on a criminal history check, they can be found via a motor vehicle records check. More serious driving offenses, such as intoxicated or reckless driving, will appear on a criminal history check.
- How Far Back do Criminal History Checks Go? There is no federal rule for how far into the past a criminal history check goes and this is typically decided on a state-by-state basis. A common deadline among states is seven (7) years, which is the deadline in Illinois.
- What Are Verification Checks? While criminal history checks are self-explanatory and makeup only one part of a background check, “verification checks” are used to verify other important information about a candidate. This information includes education, employment history, reference checks, and professional licenses or certifications.
- How do Employment History Checks Work? Employment history/verification checks ensure the validity of the information provided by a candidate about his/her work history. These checks typically focus on objective details such as job titles, duties/responsibilities, employment dates, and salary information, which are often obtained by communicating with a candidate’s past employer. While there is no law regarding what an employer can say about a formal employee, employers are typically careful about speaking of formal employees in a personal manner to avoid accusations of defamation or slander.
- What Kinds of Civil Cases Show Up in a Background Check? Bankruptcies, civil suits, tax liens, and judgments may appear in a background check. However, under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), bankruptcies must be removed from candidates’ potential background reports after ten (10) years, and civil suits, tax liens, and judgments must be removed after seven (7) years. Also, there is no national database for civil actions just as there isn’t one for criminal actions, so the extent of evaluation of civil actions may depend on the employer conducting the background check.
- Are Driving Records Included in Background Checks? Driving records may or may not be included in background checks, but are almost always necessary for jobs that require driving. Trucking companies, for example, place far more emphasis on past traffic offenses, DUIs, and license suspensions than other employers, while all employers may emphasize driving records as much as they prefer.
- Are Credit Reports Included in Background Checks? Credit reports used to be regular components of employment screening background checks. Following the 2007-08 recession, however, bad credit had affected so many potential employees that it was no longer an essential factor of these checks; some states even began prohibiting employers from using credit reports in their hiring decisions. However, some positions still require credit checks, especially those involving the handling of money.
- What Else Can Be in a Background Check? Background check companies often provide employers with a variety of options to choose from depending on the employer’s needs and desires. Additional information that can appear in a background check may include residence history, drug test results, placement on a terror watch list or sex offender registry, or even social media usage.
- What do Companies Look for in Background Checks? Background checks typically have common components: a criminal records check will search for county and federal records, prior convictions, and international criminal history. Identity, employment, and education checks help ensure that candidates are who they say they are and all information they have provided is accurate. Credit checks, while less important than they were prior to the 2008 recession, are still necessary for many finance-related positions. Finally, candidates should be mindful of the possibility of their social media pages being browsed by a potential employer. However, this should not be a cause for concern for most candidates, as employers typically search only for patterns of abusive or antisocial behavior or anything egregious enough to cause an employer to reconsider a particular candidate.
People, First - Here’s What Our Clients Say About Us
- “Thank you Agruss Law Firm!! Not only did you make them remove negative information from my credit report, I also received a settlement payment. I so appreciate your speedy and expert services. I am very glad that I ran across your agency, you were very professional and most of all able to assist me with my issue.”
- “I had inaccurate information on my credit report from a student loan company. I disputed it and got no results. Agruss Law Firm took my case, sued the responsible parties, fixed my credit report, got me money damages, and the other side paid my fees and costs. I did not pay anything.”
- “My ID was stolen. I had wrong information on my credit report. My lawyer got the wrong information removed and got me money. This was fast and easy. I highly recommend Agruss Law.”
Share Your Complaints Below About Research Associates
We encourage you to post your complaints about Research Associates below. Sharing your complaints against this agency can help other consumers understand what to do when this company starts calling. Sharing your experience may help someone else!
HERE'S THE DEAL!
If you have a problem with Research Associates regarding your background check, you may be entitled to money damages, up to $1,000.00, plus actual damages, and we’ll get Research Associates to fix the error. The FCRA also has a fee-shift provision, which means the credit reporting agency will pay your attorney’s fees and costs. You won’t owe us a dime for our services. We have helped hundreds of consumers fix inaccurate information on their credit reports, and we’re ready to help you, too.
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