Submitted for approval on Wednesday October Credit Report Policy by Diditfit

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									Submitted for approval on Wednesday, October 29, 2008.




                                     Credit Report Policy
Purpose

This document establishes new policies for those positions at Armstrong Atlantic State
University (“the University” or “AASU”) having responsibility for the financial resources
of the University. These policies follow Georgia law, federal law and Guidance provided
by the Board of Regents. These policies became effective July 1, 2008.

Credit Checks

As directed by the Board of Regents, it is the policy of Armstrong Atlantic State
University to check credit histories of those individuals who apply for positions with the
University that have access to financial resources. It is also the policy of the University
to check credit histories of those individuals who hold certain positions with access to the
University’s financial resources including, but not limited to, Purchase Cards. In general,
individuals in positions with access to, or responsibility for money will be required to
submit to a credit check as a condition of employment or as a condition of continued
employment with the University. The credit report will be used as a factor in establishing
employment eligibility. Each University employee to whom this policy applies will be
required to submit to a credit check every five years as a condition of continued
employment.

The credit check policy also applies to new Purchase Card accounts issued after July 1,
2008. In addition, this policy applies to all previous cardholders who had a Purchase
Card that was deactivated or expired prior to July 1, 2008 and who were issued a new
Purchase Card after July 1, 2008. The policy also applies whenever a Purchase Card is
renewed. In short, this policy applies to all individuals who have a Purchase Card issued
or renewed after July 1, 2008.

Each job applicant or current employee to whom this policy applies will be required to
sign an authorization allowing the University to obtain a current credit report as a
condition of employment. Failure to provide a signed authorization in a form approved
by the University will result in the rejection of an applicant’s employment application
and/or disciplinary action including the possible termination of a current employee.

The information obtained from the credit report will be used to determine: (1) whether to
extend or retract an offer of employment to a job applicant or (2) with respect to a current
employee of the University, whether the employee should be removed from his or her
position, or alternatively, whether the employee’s access to or responsibility for money
should be eliminated; or whether the employee’s use of a Purchase Card should be
revoked.

A determination of ineligibility for a specific position as the result of an individual’s
credit report result does not mean that the individual is ineligible for all employment with
the University and each such determination will be made on a case by case basis.

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The Criteria for Establishing Credit Worthiness

The following guidelines will be used by the University to interpret the information
obtained from the credit report for each applicant and/or current employee.

          1. Student loans currently in default and bankruptcies will be considered
             bad credit, however, a bankruptcy followed by good credit established
             after filing, indicates an attempt to rectify past credit problems and
             may be considered acceptable if the bankruptcy occurred over three
             years ago.

          2. Credit reports indicating installment and revolving credit payments in
             excess of forty percent (40%) of gross monthly income are not
             acceptable. Installment debt is debt issued on the condition of
             regularly occurring payments until the principal and interest are paid in
             full. Examples include, but are not limited to, car loans, student loans
             and mortgage payments (principal and interest only). Revolving credit
             is a line of credit that can be borrowed against. After the money is
             paid back, the credit limit revolves back up to what it was originally.
             Examples include credit cards and equity lines of credit.

          3. One or more unpaid collections and judgments are considered to be
             bad credit. Collections and judgments appear under the "Public
             Records" section of a credit report. Collections and judgments can be
             paid, marked paid or satisfied but will not be removed from the credit
             report for seven (7) years. If collections and judgments have been paid
             and all other credit is satisfactory, the University may approve the
             applicant’s credit history, at its discretion.

          4. Mitigating factors regarding an applicant’s credit report, such as
             hardships and disputes with creditors, will be considered by the
             University upon timely submission of objective written evidence, as
             long as the evidence presented, in the sole opinion of the University,
             represents reliable evidence beyond the applicant’s control.

          5. It is not the responsibility of the University to discover, research, or
             verify that there are possible mitigating factors for an adverse credit
             report. The burden of proof to present mitigating factors rests entirely
             with the applicant.

The Review Process

All credit reports will be handled in the same manner as the Criminal Background
Investigation report conducted on all applicants to whom a conditional offer of
employment has been extended. The credit report will be delivered to the Director of

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Human Resources at Armstrong Atlantic State University by the entity conducting the
credit check.

The credit report will remain with the Human Resource Department until a determination
on employment and/or continued employment eligibility is made. The Human Resource
Department shall place a certification in the applicant’s/current employee’s (hereinafter
“the Candidate’s”) file stating the date the report was obtained, the name of the person or
persons reviewing the credit report and a statement that the credit report showed that the
Candidate was or was not eligible for employment at the University. The credit report
will be maintained separate and apart from the Candidate’s personnel file. The credit
report will not be provided to the Department in which the position is located. The
Department will only be told that the Candidate’s credit report was or was not acceptable
for the position.

A copy of each Candidate’s credit report will be provided to the Candidate free of charge.
The credit report will be transmitted to the Candidate in the manner selected by the
Candidate i.e. by facsimile, by e-mail or by certified mail return receipt.

 The Candidate has the right to dispute the accuracy or completeness of any information
contained in the credit report with the credit reporting agency. In general, the reporting
agency has thirty (30) days from the date it receives written notice of the disputed
information, to respond. The Candidate should contact the credit reporting agency
directly to obtain the credit agency’s procedures for disputing the accuracy of the credit
report. The University will not participate in the dispute.

If a Candidate wants the University to consider any mitigating factors, the Candidate
must (1) provide prompt notice (within 48 hours of the Candidate’s receipt of the report)
to the University’s Director of Human Resources of the Candidate’s intent to provide
additional information and/or to dispute the accuracy of the information contained in the
credit report and (2) the Candidate must provide a copy of all supporting information and
documentation to the University’s Director of Human Resources within 72 hours after
receiving the credit report. See Guideline Nos. 4 and 5 above.

Unless the University’s Director of Human Resources receives notice of an intent to
dispute any of the information contained in a credit report within 48 hours of the
Candidate’s receipt of the credit report or if the Candidate fails to provide the information
and documentation to the University within 72 hours, the University may at its sole
discretion, make an employment decision based on the credit report. However, if you
are a job applicant, the University is not obligated to wait until the reporting credit
agency responds to your Complaint. If you are a current employee, the University will
allow you up to forty-five (45) days to resolve a dispute with the credit reporting agency
before making an employment decision. If the University concludes that the Candidate is
not eligible for employment based on information contained in the credit report, a notice
of adverse action will be provided to the applicant or current employee as applicable.




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Submitted for approval on Wednesday, October 29, 2008.



The Department of Human Resources is responsible for distributing the “Fair Credit
Reporting Act Disclosure and Authorization to Obtain Credit Report” form and the
“Transmission of Credit Report” form to each individual to whom this policy applies.
Completed authorizations for credit reports will be placed the Candidate’s personnel file
and maintained in accordance with USG Record Retention Guidelines.

For all non-successful applicants and current employees the following documents will be
maintained by the University in accordance with USG Record Retention Guidelines: (1)
authorization forms, (2) all credit reports (3) a copy of the pre-adverse action disclosure,
(4) a copy of the adverse action notice, and (5) the statement of the person reviewing the
credit report to determine if the Candidate was or was not eligible for employment.

                                      FACTS YOU SHOULD KNOW

Credit history contained in a credit report is provided by credit grantors with whom you
have credit. This includes both open accounts and accounts that have been closed.
Payment in full does not remove your payment history. A credit report will typically
contain the following information:

     o Personal Identification Information: This section contains your name, current
       and previous addresses and any other identifying information reported by your
       creditors.
     o Public Record Information: This section includes public records obtained from
       state and federal courts including bankruptcies and legal judgments.
     o Credit Account Information: This section includes open and closed accounts
       reported by your creditors i.e. credit card companies, department stores, loans
       from finance companies, banks, mortgage companies etc.
     o Collection Agency Information: This section includes accounts that credit
       grantors have placed for collection with a collection agency.

The length of time information typically remains in your credit report (depending on the
reporting company’s policy and your state’s law) is shown below:

     •    Collection accounts                     7 years
     •    Credit accounts paid as agreed          10 years
     •    Credit accounts not paid as agreed      7 years
     •    Public records                          7 years from the date filed except
             o Bankruptcy: Chapters 7 and 11      10 years
             o Bankruptcy: Chapter 13 dismissed or no decision rendered remain 10
                  years
             o Unpaid tax liens                   indefinitely
             o Paid tax liens                     up to 7 years




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Submitted for approval on Wednesday, October 29, 2008.



Credit Reporting Bureaus

The following are the three primary credit reporting bureaus. Georgia residents are
entitled to two free credit reports a year.

       •   Equifax
              o To Report Fraud: - P.O. Box 740250 / Atlanta, GA 30374 / (800) 525-
                  6285
              o To Acquire Credit Report: P.O. Box 740241 / Atlanta, GA 30374-0241 /
                  (800) 685-1111
              o To dispute information in report: Call the phone number provided on your
                  credit report.
              o To opt out of pre-approved offers: Equifax Options / P.O. Box 740123 /
                  Atlanta GA 30374-0123 / (888) 5OPTOUT

       •   Experian (formerly TRW)

               o    To report fraud: P.O. Box 1017 / Allen, TX 75013 / (888) EXPERIAN /
                    (888) 397-3742 / Fax: (800) 301-7196
               o    To order a copy of of your credit report: / P.O. Box 2104 / Allen TX
                    75013 / (888) EXPERIAN
               o    To dispute information in report: Call the phone number provided on your
                    credit report.
               o    To opt out of pre-approved offers: P.O. Box 919 / Allen, TX 75013 / (888)
                    5OPTOUT

   •       TransUnion:

                º     To report fraud: P.O. Box 6790 / Fullerton, CA 92634 / (800) 680-7289

               o    To order a copy of of your credit report: P.O. Box 390 / Springfield, PA
                    19064 / (800) 888-4213
               o    To dispute information in report: Call the phone number provided on your
                    credit report.
               o    To opt out of pre-approved offers: P.O Box 97328 / Jackson, MS 39238 /
                    (888) 5OPTOUT

For an article prepared by the Federal Trade Commission for the Consumer entitled
“How to Dispute Credit Report Errors” please go to the following web page:

http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/credit/cre21.pdf




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