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DFEH Cracking Down on Violations of the Fair Chance Act

In October 2021, the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (“DFEH”) announced a new initiative focused on identifying and correcting violations of the Fair Chance Act (the “Act”), which prohibits employers with five or more employees from asking job candidates about their conviction history before offering them a job.  The Act is part of California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (“FEHA”), which is enforced by the DFEH.

The DFEH conducted a mass search of online job postings for violations of the Act and found over 500 job postings containing statements that employers would not consider job applicants with a criminal record, in violation of the Act. The DFEH sent notices to these employers to remove the unlawful statements.

The DFEH is offering a Fair Chance Act Toolkit with resources to help employers comply with the Act and plans to release interactive training and an online app in 2022.  The Toolkit can be found at and includes the following resources:

  • An informative video that explains the Act
  • Sample forms that employers can use to follow the procedures required by the Act
  • A guide to using the sample forms
  • Suggested text that employers can add to job postings and applications to inform applicants that the employer will consider individuals with a criminal history
  • FAQS about the Act

If you have questions about the Fair Chance Act or how your business can comply, please contact our office to speak with one of our experienced employment law attorneys.