Washington Ban the Box Law Limits Criminal Background Inquiries
Washington will become the next state to implement "ban the box" legislation in June.
Governor Jay Inslee signed into law the Washington Fair Chance Act (WFCA) on March 13, which prohibits inquiries regarding applicants' conviction histories until the employer has determined the applicant is "otherwise qualified" for the position.
Some employers are excluded, including those hiring a person who will or may have unsupervised access to children under the age of 18 or a vulnerable adult or person, and any employer, including a financial institution, who is expressly permitted or required under any federal or state law to inquire into, consider or rely on information about an applicant's or employee's criminal record for employment purposes, among others.
Maximum penalties begin with a fine of $750 for first violations and $1,000 for each subsequent violation.