Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of HB4658
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Full Text of HB4658  96th General Assembly



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1     AN ACT concerning employment.
2     Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
3 represented in the General Assembly:
4     Section 1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the
5 Employee Credit Privacy Act.
6     Section 5. Definitions. As used in this Act:
7     "Credit history" means an individual's past borrowing and
8 repaying behavior, including paying bills on time and managing
9 debt and other financial obligations.
10     "Credit report" means any written or other communication of
11 any information by a consumer reporting agency that bears on a
12 consumer's creditworthiness, credit standing, credit capacity,
13 or credit history.
14     "Employee" means an individual who receives compensation
15 for performing services for an employer under an express or
16 implied contract of hire.
17     "Employer" means an individual or entity that permits one
18 or more individuals to work or that accepts applications for
19 employment or is an agent of an employer. "Employer" does not,
20 however, include:
21         (1) Any bank holding company, financial holding
22     company, bank, savings bank, savings and loan association,
23     credit union, or trust company, or any subsidiary or



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1     affiliate thereof, that is authorized to do business under
2     the laws of this State or of the United States.
3         (2) Any company authorized to engage in any kind of
4     insurance or surety business pursuant to the Illinois
5     Insurance Code, including any employee, agent, or employee
6     of an agent acting on behalf of a company engaged in the
7     insurance or surety business.
8         (3) Any State law enforcement or investigative unit,
9     including, without limitation, any such unit within the
10     Office of any Executive Inspector General, the Department
11     of State Police, the Department of Corrections, the
12     Department of Juvenile Justice, or the Department of
13     Natural Resources.
14         (4) Any State or local government agency which
15     otherwise requires use of the employee's or applicant's
16     credit history or credit report.
17         (5) Any entity that is defined as a debt collector
18     under federal or State statute.
19     "Financial information" means non-public information on
20 the overall financial direction of an organization, including,
21 but not limited to, company taxes or profit and loss reports.
22     "Marketable assets" means company property that is
23 specially safeguarded from the public and to which access is
24 only entrusted to managers and select other employees. For the
25 purposes of this Act, marketable assets do not include the
26 fixtures, furnishings, or equipment of an employer.



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1     "Personal or confidential information" means sensitive
2 information that a customer or client of the employing
3 organization gives explicit authorization for the organization
4 to obtain, process, and keep; that the employer entrusts only
5 to managers and a select few employees; or that is stored in
6 secure repositories not accessible by the public or low-level
7 employees.
8     "State or national security information" means information
9 only offered to select employees because it may jeopardize the
10 security of the State or the nation if it were entrusted to the
11 general public.
12     "Trade secrets" means sensitive information regarding a
13 company's overall strategy or business plans. This does not
14 include general proprietary company information such as
15 handbooks, policies, or low-level strategies.
16     Section 10. Employment based on credit history or credit
17 report not permitted.
18     (a) Except as provided in this Section, an employer shall
19 not do any of the following:
20         (1) Fail or refuse to hire or recruit, discharge, or
21     otherwise discriminate against an individual with respect
22     to employment, compensation, or a term, condition, or
23     privilege of employment because of the individual's credit
24     history or credit report.
25         (2) Inquire about an applicant's or employee's credit



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1     history.
2         (3) Order or obtain an applicant's or employee's credit
3     report from a consumer reporting agency.
4     (b) The prohibition in subsection (a) of this Section does
5 not prevent an inquiry or employment action if a satisfactory
6 credit history is an established bona fide occupational
7 requirement of a particular position or a particular group of
8 an employer's employees. A satisfactory credit history is not a
9 bona fide occupational requirement unless at least one of the
10 following circumstances is present:
11         (1) State or federal law requires bonding or other
12     security covering an individual holding the position.
13         (2) The duties of the position include custody of or
14     unsupervised access to cash or marketable assets valued at
15     $2,500 or more.
16         (3) The duties of the position include signatory power
17     over business assets of $100 or more per transaction.
18         (4) The position is a managerial position which
19     involves setting the direction or control of the business.
20         (5) The position involves access to personal or
21     confidential information, financial information, trade
22     secrets, or State or national security information.
23         (6) The position meets criteria in administrative
24     rules, if any, that the U.S. Department of Labor or the
25     Illinois Department of Labor has promulgated to establish
26     the circumstances in which a credit history is a bona fide



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1     occupational requirement.
2         (7) The employee's or applicant's credit history is
3     otherwise required by or exempt under federal or State law.
4     Section 15. Retaliatory or discriminatory acts. A person
5 shall not retaliate or discriminate against a person because
6 the person has done or was about to do any of the following:
7         (1) File a complaint under this Act.
8         (2) Testify, assist, or participate in an
9     investigation, proceeding, or action concerning a
10     violation of this Act.
11         (3) Oppose a violation of this Act.
12     Section 20. Waiver. An employer shall not require an
13 applicant or employee to waive any right under this Act. An
14 agreement by an applicant or employee to waive any right under
15 this Act is invalid and unenforceable.
16     Section 25. Remedies.
17     (a) A person who is injured by a violation of this Act may
18 bring a civil action in circuit court to obtain injunctive
19 relief or damages, or both.
20     (b) The court shall award costs and reasonable attorney's
21 fees to a person who prevails as a plaintiff in an action
22 authorized under subsection (a) of this Section.



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1     Section 30. Fair Credit Reporting Act. Nothing in this Act
2 shall prohibit employers from conducting a thorough background
3 investigation, which may include obtaining a report without
4 information on credit history or an investigative report
5 without information on credit history, or both, as permitted
6 under the Fair Credit Reporting Act. This information shall be
7 used for employment purposes only.