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National Summary
Reference checks are a useful way for employers to gather information that is not readily available from other sources, such as from the application or resume, or the job interview. However, employers are leery about providing references because they could be sued for giving a negative reference about a former employee or for failing to tell a prospective employer about an employee’s poor performance or misconduct. In response to this legal quagmire, some states have enacted laws providing employers with protection or immunity from claims based on references. In addition, there are steps employers can take to limit liability for giving accurate and factual references about former employees. Likewise, there are policies and practices employers can use to help them obtain the necessary information they need to make hiring decisions.
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