New Jersey Company Settles With New York Attorney General’s Office Over Alleged Discrimination Against Applicants With a Criminal History

1342025_medical_equipment sxchu username autodidact.jpgOne of the world’s largest medical and diagnostic testing companies in the world, Quest Diagnostics, has reportedly settled with regulators from the State of New York over allegations that the company engaged in employment discrimination. According to the New York State Attorney General’s Office, Quest violated state law by automatically disqualifying job applicants based solely on their criminal history. As part of the settlement, the Fortune 500 Company apparently agreed to pay $70,000 in fines and submit periodic compliance reports to state regulators. The Madison, New Jersey-based company will also reportedly modify its hiring policies, conduct employee training regarding the changed policies, and preserve all of its hiring records. Quest purportedly employs more than 42,000 people nationwide and operates at least 200 facilities in New York.

An investigation into Quest’s hiring practices allegedly resulted after a prospective job applicant filed a complaint with the Attorney General’s Office. In the State of New York, potential employers must consider a number of mitigating factors in conjunction with an applicant’s criminal history. Following the investigation, Quest was accused of refusing to hire applicants with a criminal past without regard for their qualifications, the amount of time that passed since the conviction, and evidence of rehabilitation. In addition, a Quest subsidiary, ExamOne Worldwide Inc., allegedly violated New York law by summarily refusing to consider any applicant with a criminal conviction that occurred within the previous seven years.

As this case demonstrates, employment discrimination can affect job applicants as well as those who are employed. Unfortunately, such discrimination is not always immediately obvious. Under both state and federal law, workers have a right to sue for damages if they were discriminated against. In order to recover financial compensation, employees must be part of a group that is statutorily protected. Workers who were discriminated against based upon their age, gender, race, disability, religion, military status, pregnancy, and more may have a discrimination claim against an employer. Oftentimes, employers discriminate against such classes of persons by failing to hire, demoting, firing, or harassing them. If you suffered employment discrimination during the application process or after you were hired, you should contact a skilled employment lawyer to discuss your rights.

The employment attorneys at the Resnick Law Group represent current and former workers in legal matters involving discrimination, employment contracts, and a variety of others issues in both New Jersey and New York. To discuss how we may assist you, please contact our hardworking advocates online or give us a call today at 973-781-1204 or 646-867-7997.

More Blog Posts:

Jury Award Demonstrates Why Disabled Workers in New Jersey and Nationwide Must be Defended Against Unlawful Discrimination, The New Jersey Employment Law Firm Blog, May 23, 2013
Unpaid Intern Lawsuits Seek to Enforce Wage and Hour Laws, The New Jersey Employment Law Firm Blog, May 9, 2013
Additional Resources:

Quest, NY AG settle employment issue, by Tracey Drury, Buffalo Business First

Quest Diagnostics Agrees Not to Automatically Disqualify Job Candidates Based on Prior Arrests, by William Demarest, Tarrytown-Sleepy Hollow Patch

Photo credit: autodidact, Stock.xchng

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