2020 Annual Conference


*Designates sessions approved as FCRA Basic Certificate Renewal PDC

Diversity and Inclusion in Background Screening - Avoiding Discrimination, Shaping Better Workplaces
Carol Miaskoff, EEOC; Bianca Lager, Social Intelligence; Vu Do, PreCheck, Inc.; Montserrat Miller, Arnall Golden Gregory LLP
This session will bring awareness to Diversity and Inclusion issues and initiatives that intersect with the background screening space, review what kinds of background screening products directly support Diversity and Inclusion initiatives, and discuss potential practices CRAs can be knowledgeable about and implement to facilitate end-user compliance and screening in the current work climate.

Federal, State and Access Update
Jamie Tucker, Akin Gump; Brent Smoyer Government Affairs; Jose Dimas
An update from PBSA contracted partners, to include current legislative activity affecting the industry at both the federal and state levels. Walk away with an understanding of the current legislative landscape that impacts your business.

The World is Upside-down. So What Now?
Pamela Q. Devata, Seyfarth Shaw LLP
The world has changed dramatically in the last few months. From shelter in place to rush to hire, to court closings and alternative resources. But one thing has remained constant-the need to be compliant. This session will focus on new legal trends and theories, hot issues for regulators, COVID specific challenges and what your clients expect from you during these challenging times. 

*Yes, It's Probably Time to Reconsider Your Report Language And Structure!
Scott Paler, DeWitt LLP
Many consumer reporting agencies have not reconsidered their report structure and wording in years.  This issue is effectively on “auto-pilot.” But the structure and wording of reports impacts everything from the end-user’s ability to interpret results, to the CRA’s ability to satisfy its accuracy and completeness obligations, to plaintiff attorneys’ capacity to make “recklessness” and “willfulness” arguments. This session, led by attorney and frequent PBSA presenter Scott Paler, will provide a series of common practice tips for improving the quality of reports.


Business Track

MONITORING - Beyond the buzzword into the data and its uses
Vince Pascarella, Wholesale Screening Solutions; Brian Kelly, Appriss Insights; John Kloos, BackChecked LLC (Moderator)
Aside from becoming a buzzword, Monitoring or Continous Screening for arrest and court records is the newest class of service in the industry. This session is intended to share how monitoring works, various data and service options, benefits to end users and CRAs; what the limitations are on usability; and to answer your questions.  

Surviving a SOC 2 Type 2 Audit - Don't be so afraid!
John Kloos, BackChecked LLC
SOC 2 Type 2 has become the premier security standard for service organizations. This includes the platforms, data centers and cloud computing providers that serve our industry. Perhaps you are preparing for such audit yourself. Or, you may just want to know what your suppliers have achieved. Either way, you'll hear from somebody who just completed the audit, with the experience fresh in mind. What did it take? What did it cost? Was it worth the effort? 

The Cost of Not Knowing Your Vendor Network  
Kevin Horval, IntelliCorp Records; Andy Hellman, Accurate Background
Screeners are increasingly being challenged by their customers to demonstrate their vendors have gone through a solid vendor credentialing component. Regulators and plaintiffs use vendor credentialing information (or lack of them) as reasons for negative findings. This session will provide suggestions for how to credential a new vendor, ongoing assessments, and how to document proof.

The Old Rules Don't Apply: Learn What Buyers Want And How To Sell More In A COVID Environment
Kevin Bachman, The CRA Doctor
A great CRA’s value lies in their ability to deliver on a moving target of often contradictory client demands. In depth, but cheaper. Faster, but fewer errors. Candidate driven, but low abandonment. What makes a shop great is doing so without abandoning their core principles. In a COVID world, employers are reviewing their relationships like never before, so shops need to consider a different approach to selling. Attendees will learn how to create, package, present and persuade employers that YOU’RE the best choice!

Mindful Awareness and Coaching Skills for Leaders
Scott Sadler, Creative Conflict Solutions
In today's ever changing world we must discover within us the tools to cope with stress, anxiety and fear and help those around us as well. Mindfulness at work is fast becoming a foundational, science based, tool for teams to ground and reduce the speed of business to allow us to be more effective in a happier and more joyful way. Out of this quiet time we can have different conversations based on solid coaching skills. We will discuss and practice these skills and more in this session.

Serving the Gig Economy-Challenges and Opportunities for Background Screeners
Lester Rosen, Employment Screening Resources
A significant number of workers are engaged through the Gig economy and that number is only expected to increase. There are numerous Gig or “platform” firms offering a wide variety of services or asset sharing. Background checks are often part of the marketing and risk strategies used by firms in order to create consumer trust. However, it is a great deal more complex than it sounds and likely to be a source of litigation in the future. This session will explore potential landmines and traps.

Ensuring the Lights Are on and Somebody is Home
Scott Kimball, TazWorks
There was a time when a business continuity/disaster recovery plan meant having a box of backup tapes that you hauled off periodically for safekeeping in your sister-in-law’s basement. That is insufficient in today’s always on world, where your clients depend on you to deliver services on time, every time, all the time. Come learn strategies to ensure your business and data is highly available, scalable, and durable, regardless of whether it is a rogue backhoe or a novel Coronavirus that threatens to shut you down.

Tales from the Trenches - How do End Users Indentity a Background Screening Partner
Nikki Holton, Eli Lilly and Company; Jason Morris, Morris Group Consulting, LLC
This session will discuss how end users work together collectively and within their organization to idenitfy a background screenign partner that meets their needs.  The session is intended for CRAs who would like some additional insight into the internal selection process by employers. We will discuss both big and small employers what you as a potential partner can do to help them understand the background screening profession beyond a demo of your online capabiliites.

Do You Send Out Mixed Signals? Optimizing Revenue Through Sales, Marketing and Account Management 
Nick Fishman, Nick Fishman, LLC; Jason Morris, Morris Group Consulting, LLC
Frustrated that your sales and marketing initiatives seem disconnected when it comes to developing new sales opportunities and engaging your current roster of clients? Developing a cross-functional strategy is just what you need to get on the same page and make a meaningful impact. This session, presented by Nick Fishman and Jason Morris, focuses on how CRAs can maximize revenue and minimize attrition by creating the perfect alignment between sales, account management and marketing.

Drug Testing Track

Workplace Drug Testing - Strategic Planning for CRAs
Nina French, Hound Labs
Pre-Employment testing likely represents 80% of the testing your CRA performs. Can you afford for it to go away? As marijuana legalization spreads across the country, state laws are challenging an employer's rights to perform pre-employment drug testing. Ban-the-Box changed background screening for employers and similarly, the rules changing for drug screening. This session will address the cause of the change, present future strategies for revenue retention and improvement.

How to Prepare Now for a Drug-Free Post-Pandemic Workplace
William Current, Current Consulting Group, LLC
Pre-employment drug testing has never been more important as companies prepare their drug-free workplace programs for the end of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Studies show substance abuse increases dramatically during national crisis and remains elevated for months afterward. Combine that with “new” unemployed workers, people who had jobs before the pandemic, and who will want to find a job again when it ends. Companies need to secure a safe and drug-free workplace with quick, efficient, and cost-effective pre-employment drug testing, background checks, and COVID testing.

Weed at Work: How Employers are Clearing Through the Haze
Jennifer Mora, Seyforth Shaw LLP
Laws and public opinion regarding marijuana are rapidly evolving. With CBD expected to become a $22B industry, employers are becoming increasingly concerned about how best to maintain a drug-free workplace while also avoiding litigation and attracting and retaining talent in a pot-friendly market. This presentation will help CRAs understand how this rapidly changing area of the law impacts their clients, including a discussion of the legal landscape, common practices for drug testing, navigating federal contracting “drug-free workplace” rules and any notice requirements.

International Track

The World of Crime, or at least Criminal Records, Explained
Kerstin Bagus, NetForce Global LLC; Andy Hellman, Accurate Background
The name may be the same but how criminal records are sourced and processed can vary greatly from country to country. This session will introduce participants to the primary types of criminal records, including Certificates, court sources, “criminality” databases, adverse media and some of the major proprietary databases.  Finally, we’ll discuss how adjudication can be done when a hit is found.

Are you subject to GDPR & UK Data Privacy Regimes?
Kerstin Bagus, NetForce Globacl LLC; Kevin Coy, Arnall Golden Gregory LLP
Organizations outside of the EEA and UK may be subject to GDPR and / or the UK Data Privacy regulations. If they are, there are many obligations that follow, including having a local Representative. But is your operation really subject to these regimes? Maybe not or maybe only for part of them. This session will review how to assess if your organization is subject to them. We will also cover how to address customer requirements when you feel you are not subject to these regimes.

Quick, the Auditors are Here. Where is the Vendor Contract and What's in it?
Kerstin Bagus, NetForce Global LLC; Kevin Coy, Arnall Golden Gregory LLP; Mark Sward, Sterling
Vendor Management is more than a purchasing function. Certain contractual language may be required (GDPR, Privacy Shield). Specific compliance requirements may be required (CCPA). A level of accountability to clients, internal management, and regulators must be met. If a data breach occurs, or information is misused, you may be on the hook even if you did not know about it. Any company using vendors may need to adhere to these requirements. This session reviews critical contractual and accountability requirements.


Legal/Compliance Track

*Five Key Lessons for Defending FCRA Class Action Lawsuits
David Anthony, Troutman Sanders LLP; Timothy St. George, Troutman Sanders, LLP; Cindy Hanson Troutman Sanders LLP
Companies in the background screening industry face legal risks under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”). The FCRA creates unique challenges when a plaintiff chooses to bring a class action lawsuit. This session explores five key concepts that companies need to keep in mind should they find themselves being sued in a FCRA class action lawsuit.

*Upstream, Downstream, You Scream, I Scream: Compliance Considerations When Buying and Selling Data
Erin Novak, Montgomery McCraken Walker Rhoads LLP
Whether you are buying or selling consumer information, you want to make sure your information is accurate, up to date, and FCRA compliant. But what happens when you suspect your upstream or downstream business partners are less focused on compliance than you are? This session will address some common pitfalls and practices when dealing with business partners whose FCRA compliance procedures may be a bit fishy.

CCPA Compliance for Background Screeners: The FCRA Exemption May Not Be Enough!
Mark Sward, Sterling
The California Consumer Privacy Act took effect on January 1. It imposes many new obligations on companies that process the data of California consumers, and grants those consumers a number of new rights. While FCRA-regulated activities are exempt, many CRAs may still find themselves caught by the CCPA for other services they sell, not to mention their own marketing and HR activities. This session provides an overview of the CCPA, the obligations it imposes, and what a CRA should consider for compliance.

*FCRA Basics for Screeners - Distance Learning Style
Becki Kuehn, Hudson Cook; Cierra Newman, Hudson Cook
New to screening or need a refresher on FCRA basics?  Ever wonder why you have to conduct a “reinvestigation” even when it is the first time you have seen the dispute?  Join Professors Kuehn and Newman for this energetic session on FCRA basics, from onboarding new customers through adverse action compliance for CRAs, with the goal of understanding the “whys.” 
1. Attendees will learn the basic structure of FCRA and requirements for background screening CRAs.
2.Overview of timetables and core requirements around consumer disputes under the FCRA.
3.Discussion of compliance resources available to CRAs. 

*Brain Twisters in Employment Screening
William Simmons, Littler Mendelson P.C.; Chad Kaldor, Littler Mendelson, P.C.
Bill Simmons and Chad Kaldor from Littler will lead this brainstorming exercise, tackling potential solutions to some of the most complicated brain twisters in employment screening. This advanced session will address user certifications (particularly where integrations or consumer portals are involved), thorny problems with implementation of electronic disclosure portals, and the increasingly complex art of responding to file disclosure requests. Bill and Chad will assume familiarity with the basics so that they can jump right "into the weeds" with the audience.

Effective Vendor Management Strategies - It's More Important Than Ever Before 
Jackie Drziak, All in Compliance
Who are your third parties? How do you select third parties to help in the distribution of your products? Do you REALLY know how they manage things like Business Continuity, Data Security, and Compliance with State and Federal Laws?  Introducing third parties does bring additional risks to your orgranization yet lets face it, you cannot compete without your vendors.   This session will cover effective vendor management, why we need it, how to perform it and who should support it.  Topics will include risk assessment, due diligence,termination strategies and more.

*COVID-19, Remote Employees and the Evolving Cyber Threat Landscape
Montserrat Miller, Arnall Golden Gregory LLP; Kevin Coy, Arnall Golden Gregory LLP; Kristin Adams, Aon; CJ Dietzman, Aon
COVID-19 has turned our workplaces upside down and companies of all sizes are adjusting to the new "normal" of remote employees. Now, entire workforces may be working remotely and not returning to their offices until next year (at the earliest). This session will focus on the current cyber threat landscape, challenges of remote work, compliance and common practices for protecting and retaining consumer data, concerns for cyber environment and reputational risk, cyber insurance, and data breaches.


Tenant Track

Tenant Screening in a Virtual World
Katie Hawkins, Hudson Cook LLP; Jennifer Sarvadi, Hudson Cook LLP
A variety of consumer transactions are moving to the online space – including leasing.  What does that mean for tenant screening?  This session will explore compliance considerations including privacy and security issues, online applications, proper use of tools to verify identity, electronic payments and signatures, and electronic delivery of adverse action notices.  The speakers will address the variety of laws and considerations specific to conducting business online, with an eye towards those applicable to tenant screening.

*Tenant Screening Common Practices: Navigating The Evolving "Fair Chance" Landscape
Jennifer Mora, Seyfarth Shaw LLP
As the landlord-tenant industry becomes increasingly regulated, it can be difficult to navigate the tenant screening process.  This session will equip attendees with knowledge and tips to become and stay compliant.  The session will discuss key laws currently impacting tenant screening, including the FCRA, tenant screening laws recently enacted at the local level, and what the future holds. Additionally, the session will cover some common mistakes by CRAs and end users and will feature an interactive portion encouraging audience members to brainstorm ideas.