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AHCA Background Screening APD Background Screening Department of Health Background Screening Florida Department of Elderly Affairs Background Screening

Florida Department of Elder Affairs Background Screening Requirements Emergency Ruling

DEPARTMENT OF ELDER AFFAIRS


Emergency Rule No.: RULE TITLE 58ER10-2: Background Screening Requirements.

 

SPECIFIC REASONS FOR FINDING AN IMMEDIATE DANGER TO THE PUBLIC HEALTH, SAFETY OR WELFARE:

 

The Florida Legislature passed Chapter 2010-114, Laws of Florida (L.O.F.), during the 2010 legislative session. This new law requires that effective August 1, 2010, all individuals seeking employment or volunteerism, which will require direct contact with individuals receiving services under the jurisdiction of the DOEA, must undergo a Level 2 background screening prior to employment or volunteerism. The Department is publishing this emergency rule to protect the health, safety and welfare of its recipients, thus eliminating the threat of immediate danger by reducing the potential for physical, mental or sexual abuse, or financial exploitation.

 

REASON FOR CONCLUDING THAT THE PROCEDURE IS FAIR UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES: This emergency rule establishes criteria for complying with Level 2 background screening requirements pursuant to Chapter 2010-114, L.O.F., and more specifically, pursuant to Sections 430.0402 and 435.01(2), F.S., the later section which provides rulemaking authority to individual agencies affected by the new background screening requirements. In addition, Section 430.08, F.S., provides the DOEA with rulemaking authority to establish rules to implement the provisions of Chapter 430, F.S. The DOEA has been unable to complete the rulemaking process. Consequently, the DOEA finds it necessary to publish this emergency rule to continue to protect the health, safety and welfare of recipients while continuing with the rulemaking process.

 

SUMMARY: This emergency rule establishes criteria and procedures for complying with the new requirement of a Level 2 background screening for all potential employees, who will have direct contact with Department recipients, prior to employment or volunteerism.

 

THE PERSON TO BE CONTACTED REGARDING THE EMERGENCY RULE IS: Jim Crochet, Department of Elder Affairs, Office of the General Counsel, 4040 Esplanade Way, Suite 315, Tallahassee, FL 32399-7000; telephone (850) 414-2113; Email address: crochethj@elderaffairs.org.

 

THE FULL TEXT OF THE EMERGENCY RULE IS:
58ER10-2 Background Screening Requirements.
(1) DEFINITIONS.
In addition to the term “direct service provider,” as defined in Section 430.0402(1)(b), F.S., the following definitions are included in this rule:


(a) “AHCA” means the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration.
(b) “APD” means the Florida Agency for Persons with Disabilities.
(c) “CDC+” means the Consumer Directed Care Plus Program as described in Section 409.221, F.S.
(d) “Disqualifying Offense” means any criminal offense prohibited in Section 430.0402 or 435.04, F.S.
(e) “DOEA” or “Department” means the Florida Department of Elder Affairs.
(f) “DOH” means the Florida Department of Health.
(g) “FBI” means the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
(h) “FDLE” means the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
(i) “Level 1 Screening” means an assessment of employment history checks, statewide criminal correspondence checks, local criminal history checks and a check of the Dru Sjodin National Sex Offender Public Website coordinated through FDLE to determine whether screened individuals have any disqualifying offenses pursuant to Section 430.0402 or 435.04, F.S.


1
(j) “Level 2 Screening” means an assessment of the criminal history record obtained through a fingerprint search coordinated through FDLE and the FBI to determine whether screened individuals have any disqualifying offenses pursuant to Section 430.0402 or 435.04, F.S.
(k) “Livescan” means both the technique and the technology used by law enforcement agencies and private facilities to capture fingerprints and palm prints electronically, without the need for the more traditional method of ink and paper.


(2) BACKGROUND SCREENING REQUIREMENTS.
Pursuant to Section 430.0402(1)(a), F.S., Level 2 background screening consistent with the requirements of Chapter 435, F.S., is required for all direct service providers as defined in Section 430.0402(1)(b), F.S.


(3) IMPLEMENTATION AND RETENTION.
Pursuant to Section 430.0402, F.S., beginning August 1, 2010, the following is required:
(a) All newly-hired direct service providers shall be required to undergo a Level 2 background screening pursuant to Chapter 435 as a condition of employment or volunteerism and continued employment or volunteerism. Such screening shall ensure that a direct service provider has not been arrested awaiting final disposition of, has been found guilty of, regardless of adjudication, or entered a plea of nolo contendere or guilty to, or has been adjudicated delinquent and the record has not been sealed or expunged for, any offense prohibited under Sections 430.0402, 435.03 or 435.04, F.S., or a similar law of another jurisdiction.


(b) Employers of direct service providers, who have not been previously screened according to the screening standards of Chapter 435, F.S., must ensure that at least twenty percent (20%) of the available population of such individuals are screened pursuant to the Level 2 screening standards of Chapter 435, F.S., within 120 calendar days of August 1, 2010, and an additional twenty percent (20%) every 90 calendar days thereafter, until all direct service providers have successfully satisfied the screening standards of Section 430.0402, F.S., and Chapter 435, F.S., or have applied for and received an exemption pursuant to Section 435.07, F.S. Employers with fewer than 5 direct service providers must ensure that all such direct service providers are screened within the initial 120 calendar day window after August 1, 2010.


(c) Employers of direct service providers are responsible for ensuring applicant fingerprints are retained by FDLE in the Applicant Fingerprint Retention and Notification Program, whereby notification is automatically sent to the Department’s Background Screening Coordinator, according to the procedures specified in Section 943.05, F.S., in the event of a direct service provider’s subsequent arrest.


(d) Employers of direct service providers, who previously qualified for employment or volunteer work under Level 1 screening standards, and individuals required to be screened according to the Level 2 screening standards contained in Chapter 435, F.S., and Section 430.0402, F.S., shall be required to be rescreened every 5 years from the date of their last background screening or exemption, unless such individual’s fingerprints are continuously retained and monitored by FDLE in the Applicant Fingerprint Retention and Notification Program, according to the procedures specified in Section 943.05, F.S.


(4) EXCEPTIONS.
The following are exceptions to the background screening requirements specified in this rule:
(a) Physicians, nurses, or other professionals licensed by DOH are not subject to the background screening requirements of Chapter 435, F.S, if they are providing a service that is within the scope of their licensed practice.
(b) Individuals qualified for employment by AHCA pursuant to that Agency’s background screening standards for licensure or employment contained in Section 408.809, F.S., are not subject to subsequent or additional Level 2 background screening pursuant to Chapter 435, F.S., or the unique screening requirements of Section 430.0402, F.S., by virtue of their employment as a direct service provider, if they are providing a service that is within the scope of their licensed practice.


(c) Individuals qualified for employment by APD pursuant to that Agency’s background screening standards contained in Section 393.0655, F.S., are not subject to subsequent or additional Level 2 background screening pursuant to Chapter 435, F.S., or the unique screening requirements of Section 430.0402, F.S., by virtue of their employment as a direct service provider as defined in Section 393.063(11), F.S.


(d) Back-up providers, who render services to consumers enrolled in the CDC+ program, are considered to be the same as full-time providers, as defined in Section 409.221(c)5., F.S. Consequently, they are not considered to be unemployed for more than 90 days pursuant to Section 409.221(4)(h)2.(i), F.S., if they have not been called to render back-up services for a period exceeding 90 days.


(5) ELECTRONIC SUBMISSION OF FINGERPRINTS.
Beginning August 1, 2010, fingerprints submitted pursuant to Chapter 435, F.S., must be submitted electronically to FDLE, pursuant to paragraph (3)(c) of this rule.


(6) BACKGROUND SCREENERS.
One of the entities listed in the subsections below may be utilized for Level 2 background screening as long as the entity verifies in writing to the employer that all background screeners performing electronic fingerprinting meet the requirements of Section 435.04(1)(c), F.S., and have been subject to, and passed, a Level 1 background screening under the standards set forth in Chapter 435, F.S.


(a) Any screening company listed on the FDLE website as authorized to perform Level 2 LiveScan background screenings. The website address is: http://www.fdle.state.fl.us/Content/getdoc/04833e12-3fc6-4c03-9993-379244e0da50/livescan.aspx.
(b) Any local law enforcement capable of performing Level 2 Livescan background screenings, provided the equipment and electronic fingerprint data submission have been evaluated by FDLE to verify compliance with both FDLE and FBI regulations and standards.


(7) SHARING OF SCREENING RESULTS.
The information that a particular direct service provider has successfully passed a Level 2 background screening may be shared among DOEA programs and providers. In addition, passage of a Level 2 background screening for one program or provider shall constitute passage for all programs and providers. However, the use of a Level 2 background screening by a subsequent program or provider shall not affect the applicable date for rescreening pursuant to paragraph (3)(d) of this rule, if any. No information other than the fact that the applicant passed Level 2 screening may be shared.


Rulemaking Authority 430.08, 435.01(2) FS. Law Implemented 430.0402, 435.01, 435.02, 435.03, 435.04, 435.06, 435.07 FS. History–New_11-1-10, Supersedes 58ER10-1.

 

THIS RULE TAKES EFFECT UPON BEING FILED WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE UNLESS A LATER TIME AND DATE IS SPECIFIED IN THE RULE. EFFECTIVE DATE: November 1, 2010

 

In order to get fingerprinted as part of DOEA requirement for Direct Service Providers’ Background Screening  please contact IDENTICO LLC today. We are FDLE approved Live Scan vendor, and we transmit your fingerprints for FBI Level 2 Background Check so DOEA  gets the results of screening in as less as 72 hours. The cost of screening is $62. Visit our official website www.myidentico.com or call us today (954) 239-8590.

 

We have an open door policy at our office located at 3948 Pembroke Road, Suite E, Pembroke Park, FL, 33021, however if you would like to schedule an appointment at certain time, please visit http://www.myidentico.com/hitappoint/ and we’ll serve you first regardless of any wait line.

 

Sincerely,

IDENTICO LLC.

Categories
AHCA Background Screening

What is the Electronic Screening and how does live scan work?

All Level 2 screening requests by AHCA must be submitted electronically. The Agency will no longer process Level 1 or Level 2 screening requests or fees after July 31, 2010. Any Level 1 or Level 2 screening request and fees submitted to the Agency’s Background Screening Section after July 31, 2010 will be returned to the sender unprocessed.

 

Forms of “electronic screening:”

 

LiveScan device is a term used to describe the scanners used to directly capture fingerprints through a scanning function. Person being screened place their hands directly on the scanner for reading. Fingerprint scanning using a LiveScan device provides faster results and generally costs less that hard card scanning as there is less handling involved. LiveScan capture also produces a better quality print, so has a lower rejection rate of illegible prints (no ink smudging, etc).

 

LiveScan options – There are several options for LiveScan capture including:

 

  • LiveScan vendors approved to submit fingerprint requests through the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE ). These vendors generally require advanced online reservations or appointments and charge a fee for use of the LiveScan in addition to the FDLE screening fee of $43.25. LiveScan devices are either available at specific locations or through mobile services where the vendor will either come to the provider location (based on certain volumes and fees) or another pre-arranged location. LiveScan vendors are independent businesses and each must be contacted in advance to determine fees, services and enrollment requirements. For more information regarding LiveScan vendors please see Florida LiveScan Vendor List for contact information, locations and pricing, and the FDLE LiveScan Site.
  • LiveScan devices (machines) may be purchased/leased by providers who wish to handle their own fingerprint capture. Several business offer machines (sale or lease) however, it is important to assure that any selection is approved for submission through FDLE and all requirements of fingerprint submission are met. For more information visit the FDLE LiveScan Site or the AHCA Cogent contract (Option 1 or Option 2).

 

Hard card scanning is a method of submitting a traditional fingerprint card where finger prints are “rolled’ in ink onto an FBI fingerprint card. Cards may be converted to “electronic” by using a machine that scans the cards. There is typically a fee associated with “rolling the prints” as a high degree of skill is required to achieve the necessary quality. Hard cards for AHCA screening must be obtained from AHCA because they must include the pre-printed AHCA ORI# to assure results are returned appropriately.

Categories
AHCA Background Screening APD Background Screening CDC+ Program Background Screening DCF Background Screening Department of Health Background Screening Florida Department of Elderly Affairs Background Screening Professional Guardian Background Screening

Florida Chapter 435 and State Requirements on Level 2 Background Screening

FLORIDA STATUTE-TITLE XXXI-LABOR-CHAPTER 435-EMPLOYMENT SCREENING

 

 

435.01 Applicability of this chapter; statutory references; rulemaking.

435.02 Definitions.

435.03 Level 1 screening standards.

435.04 Level 2 screening standards.

435.05 Requirements for covered employees and employers.

435.06 Exclusion from employment.

435.07 Exemptions from disqualification.

435.08 Payment for processing of fingerprints and state criminal records checks.

435.09 Confidentiality of personnel background check information.

435.10 Sharing of personnel information among employers.

435.11 Penalties.

 

1435.01 Applicability of this chapter; statutory references; rulemaking.—

 

(1)(a) Unless otherwise provided by law, whenever a background screening for employment or a background security check is required by law to be conducted pursuant to this chapter, the provisions of this chapter apply.

(b) Unless expressly provided otherwise, a reference in any section of the Florida Statutes to chapter 435 or to any section or sections or portion of a section of chapter 435 includes all subsequent amendments to chapter 435 or to the referenced section or sections or portions of a section. The purpose of this chapter is to facilitate uniform background screening and, to this end, a reference to this chapter, or to any section or subdivision within this chapter, constitutes a general reference under the doctrine of incorporation by reference.

 

(2) Agencies may adopt rules to administer this chapter.

History.—s. 47, ch. 95-228; s. 35, ch. 2010-114.

1Note.—Section 58, ch. 2010-114, provides that “[t]he changes made by this act are intended to be prospective in nature. It is not intended that persons who are employed or licensed on the effective date of this act be rescreened until such time as they are otherwise required to be rescreened pursuant to law, at which time they must meet the requirements for screening as set forth in this act.”

 

1435.02 Definitions.—For the purposes of this chapter, the term:

(1) “Agency” means any state, county, or municipal agency that grants licenses or registration permitting the operation of an employer or is itself an employer or that otherwise facilitates the screening of employees pursuant to this chapter. If there is no state agency or the municipal or county agency chooses not to conduct employment screening, “agency” means the Department of Children and Family Services.

(2) “Employee” means any person required by law to be screened pursuant to this chapter.

(3) “Employer” means any person or entity required by law to conduct screening of employees pursuant to this chapter.

(4) “Employment” means any activity or service sought to be performed by an employee which requires the employee to be screened pursuant to this chapter.

(5) “Vulnerable person” means a minor as defined in s. 1.01 or a vulnerable adult as defined in s. 415.102.

History.—s. 47, ch. 95-228; s. 207, ch. 99-8; s. 36, ch. 2010-114.

1Note.—Section 58, ch. 2010-114, provides that “[t]he changes made by this act are intended to be prospective in nature. It is not intended that persons who are employed or licensed on the effective date of this act be rescreened until such time as they are otherwise required to be rescreened pursuant to law, at which time they must meet the requirements for screening as set forth in this act.”

 

1435.03 Level 1 screening standards.—

 

(1) All employees required by law to be screened pursuant to this section must undergo background screening as a condition of employment and continued employment which includes, but need not be limited to, employment history checks and statewide criminal correspondence checks through the Department of Law Enforcement, 2and a check of the Dru Sjodin National Sex Offender Public Website, and may include local criminal records checks through local law enforcement agencies.

 

(2) Any person required by law to be screened pursuant to this section must not have an arrest awaiting final disposition, must not have been found guilty of, regardless of adjudication, or entered a plea of nolo contendere or guilty to, and must not have been adjudicated delinquent and the record has not been sealed or expunged for, any offense prohibited under s. 435.04(2) or similar law of another jurisdiction.

 

(3) The security background investigations under this section must ensure that no person subject to this section has been found guilty of, regardless of adjudication, or entered a plea of nolo contendere or guilty to, any offense that constitutes domestic violence as defined in s. 741.28, whether such act was committed in this state or in another jurisdiction.

 

History.—s. 47, ch. 95-228; s. 15, ch. 96-268; s. 21, ch. 96-322; s. 3, ch. 98-417; s. 87, ch. 2000-153; s. 45, ch. 2000-349; s. 62, ch. 2001-62; s. 50, ch. 2003-1; s. 4, ch. 2004-267; s. 3, ch. 2005-119; s. 89, ch. 2006-197; s. 61, ch. 2006-227; s. 109, ch. 2007-5; s. 16, ch. 2008-244; s. 37, ch. 2010-114.

 

1Note.—Section 58, ch. 2010-114, provides that “[t]he changes made by this act are intended to be prospective in nature. It is not intended that persons who are employed or licensed on the effective date of this act be rescreened until such time as they are otherwise required to be rescreened pursuant to law, at which time they must meet the requirements for screening as set forth in this act.”

2Note.—The word “and” was inserted by the editors.

 

1435.04 Level 2 screening standards.—

 

(1)(a) All employees required by law to be screened pursuant to this section must undergo security background investigations as a condition of employment and continued employment which includes, but need not be limited to, fingerprinting for statewide criminal history records checks through the Department of Law Enforcement, and national criminal history records checks through the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and may include local criminal records checks through local law enforcement agencies.

 

(b) Fingerprints submitted pursuant to this section on or after July 1, 2012, must be submitted electronically to the Department of Law Enforcement.

 

(c) An agency may contract with one or more vendors to perform all or part of the electronic fingerprinting pursuant to this section. Such contracts must ensure that the owners and personnel of the vendor performing the electronic fingerprinting are qualified and will ensure the integrity and security of all personal information.

 

(d) An agency may require by rule that fingerprints submitted pursuant to this section must be submitted electronically to the Department of Law Enforcement on a date earlier than July 1, 2012.

 

(2) The security background investigations under this section must ensure that no persons subject to the provisions of this section have been arrested for and are awaiting final disposition of, have been found guilty of, regardless of adjudication, or entered a plea of nolo contendere or guilty to, or have been adjudicated delinquent and the record has not been sealed or expunged for, any offense prohibited under any of the following provisions of state law or similar law of another jurisdiction:

(a) Section 393.135, relating to sexual misconduct with certain developmentally disabled clients and reporting of such sexual misconduct.

(b) Section 394.4593, relating to sexual misconduct with certain mental health patients and reporting of such sexual misconduct.

(c) Section 415.111, relating to adult abuse, neglect, or exploitation of aged persons or disabled adults.

(d) Section 782.04, relating to murder.

(e) Section 782.07, relating to manslaughter, aggravated manslaughter of an elderly person or disabled adult, or aggravated manslaughter of a child.

(f) Section 782.071, relating to vehicular homicide.

(g) Section 782.09, relating to killing of an unborn quick child by injury to the mother.

(h) Chapter 784, relating to assault, battery, and culpable negligence, if the offense was a felony.

(i) Section 784.011, relating to assault, if the victim of the offense was a minor.

(j) Section 784.03, relating to battery, if the victim of the offense was a minor.

(k) Section 787.01, relating to kidnapping.

(l) Section 787.02, relating to false imprisonment.

(m) Section 787.025, relating to luring or enticing a child.

(n) Section 787.04(2), relating to taking, enticing, or removing a child beyond the state limits with criminal intent pending custody proceedings.

(o) Section 787.04(3), relating to carrying a child beyond the state lines with criminal intent to avoid producing a child at a custody hearing or delivering the child to the designated person.

(p) Section 790.115(1), relating to exhibiting firearms or weapons within 1,000 feet of a school.

(q) Section 790.115(2)(b), relating to possessing an electric weapon or device, destructive device, or other weapon on school property.

(r) Section 794.011, relating to sexual battery.

(s) Former s. 794.041, relating to prohibited acts of persons in familial or custodial authority.

(t) Section 794.05, relating to unlawful sexual activity with certain minors.

(u) Chapter 796, relating to prostitution.

(v) Section 798.02, relating to lewd and lascivious behavior.

(w) Chapter 800, relating to lewdness and indecent exposure.

(x) Section 806.01, relating to arson.

(y) Section 810.02, relating to burglary.

(z) Section 810.14, relating to voyeurism, if the offense is a felony.

(aa) Section 810.145, relating to video voyeurism, if the offense is a felony.

(bb) Chapter 812, relating to theft, robbery, and related crimes, if the offense is a felony.

(cc) Section 817.563, relating to fraudulent sale of controlled substances, only if the offense was a felony.

(dd) Section 825.102, relating to abuse, aggravated abuse, or neglect of an elderly person or disabled adult.

(ee) Section 825.1025, relating to lewd or lascivious offenses committed upon or in the presence of an elderly person or disabled adult.

(ff) Section 825.103, relating to exploitation of an elderly person or disabled adult, if the offense was a felony.

(gg) Section 826.04, relating to incest.

(hh) Section 827.03, relating to child abuse, aggravated child abuse, or neglect of a child.

(ii) Section 827.04, relating to contributing to the delinquency or dependency of a child.

(jj) Former s. 827.05, relating to negligent treatment of children.

(kk) Section 827.071, relating to sexual performance by a child.

(ll) Section 843.01, relating to resisting arrest with violence.

(mm) Section 843.025, relating to depriving a law enforcement, correctional, or correctional probation officer means of protection or communication.

(nn) Section 843.12, relating to aiding in an escape.

(oo) Section 843.13, relating to aiding in the escape of juvenile inmates in correctional institutions.

(pp) Chapter 847, relating to obscene literature.

(qq) Section 874.05(1), relating to encouraging or recruiting another to join a criminal gang.

(rr) Chapter 893, relating to drug abuse prevention and control, only if the offense was a felony or if any other person involved in the offense was a minor.

(ss) Section 916.1075, relating to sexual misconduct with certain forensic clients and reporting of such sexual misconduct.

(tt) Section 944.35(3), relating to inflicting cruel or inhuman treatment on an inmate resulting in great bodily harm.

(uu) Section 944.40, relating to escape.

(vv) Section 944.46, relating to harboring, concealing, or aiding an escaped prisoner.

(ww) Section 944.47, relating to introduction of contraband into a correctional facility.

(xx) Section 985.701, relating to sexual misconduct in juvenile justice programs.

(yy) Section 985.711, relating to contraband introduced into detention facilities.

(3) The security background investigations under this section must ensure that no person subject to this section has been found guilty of, regardless of adjudication, or entered a plea of nolo contendere or guilty to, any offense that constitutes domestic violence as defined in s. 741.28, whether such act was committed in this state or in another jurisdiction.

History.—s. 47, ch. 95-228; s. 16, ch. 96-268; s. 22, ch. 96-322; s. 4, ch. 98-417; s. 5, ch. 99-284; s. 88, ch. 2000-153; s. 7, ch. 2001-125; s. 5, ch. 2004-267; s. 4, ch. 2005-119; s. 111, ch. 2006-120; s. 90, ch. 2006-197; s. 110, ch. 2007-5; s. 3, ch. 2007-112; s. 66, ch. 2009-223; s. 6, ch. 2010-31; s. 38, ch. 2010-114.

1Note.—Section 58, ch. 2010-114, provides that “[t]he changes made by this act are intended to be prospective in nature. It is not intended that persons who are employed or licensed on the effective date of this act be rescreened until such time as they are otherwise required to be rescreened pursuant to law, at which time they must meet the requirements for screening as set forth in this act.”

1435.05 Requirements for covered employees and employers.—Except as otherwise provided by law, the following requirements apply to covered employees and employers:

 

(1)(a) Every person required by law to be screened pursuant to this chapter must submit a complete set of information necessary to conduct a screening under this chapter.

 

(b) For level 1 screening, the employer must submit the information necessary for screening to the Department of Law Enforcement within 5 working days after receiving it. The Department of Law Enforcement shall conduct a search of its records and respond to the employer or agency. The employer must inform the employee whether screening has revealed any disqualifying information.

 

(c) For level 2 screening, the employer or agency must submit the information necessary for screening to the Department of Law Enforcement within 5 working days after receiving it. The Department of Law Enforcement shall perform a criminal history record check of its records and request that the Federal Bureau of Investigation perform a national criminal history record check of its records for each employee for whom the request is made. The Department of Law Enforcement shall respond to the employer or agency, and the employer or agency must inform the employee whether screening has revealed disqualifying information.

 

(d) The person whose background is being checked must supply any missing criminal or other necessary information upon request to the requesting employer or agency within 30 days after receiving the request for the information.

 

(2) Every employee must attest, subject to penalty of perjury, to meeting the requirements for qualifying for employment pursuant to this chapter and agreeing to inform the employer immediately if arrested for any of the disqualifying offenses while employed by the employer.

 

(3) Each employer licensed or registered with an agency must conduct level 2 background screening and must submit to the agency annually or at the time of license renewal, under penalty of perjury, a signed affidavit attesting to compliance with the provisions of this chapter.

 

History.—s. 47, ch. 95-228; s. 208, ch. 99-8; s. 46, ch. 2000-349; s. 63, ch. 2001-62; s. 21, ch. 2004-267; s. 67, ch. 2009-223; s. 39, ch. 2010-114.

 

1Note.—Section 58, ch. 2010-114, provides that “[t]he changes made by this act are intended to be prospective in nature. It is not intended that persons who are employed or licensed on the effective date of this act be rescreened until such time as they are otherwise required to be rescreened pursuant to law, at which time they must meet the requirements for screening as set forth in this act.”

1435.06 Exclusion from employment.—

 

(1) If an employer or agency has reasonable cause to believe that grounds exist for the denial or termination of employment of any employee as a result of background screening, it shall notify the employee in writing, stating the specific record that indicates noncompliance with the standards in this chapter. It is the responsibility of the affected employee to contest his or her disqualification or to request exemption from disqualification. The only basis for contesting the disqualification is proof of mistaken identity.

 

(2)(a) An employer may not hire, select, or otherwise allow an employee to have contact with any vulnerable person that would place the employee in a role that requires background screening until the screening process is completed and demonstrates the absence of any grounds for the denial or termination of employment. If the screening process shows any grounds for the denial or termination of employment, the employer may not hire, select, or otherwise allow the employee to have contact with any vulnerable person that would place the employee in a role that requires background screening unless the employee is granted an exemption for the disqualification by the agency as provided under s. 435.07.

 

(b) If an employer becomes aware that an employee has been arrested for a disqualifying offense, the employer must remove the employee from contact with any vulnerable person that places the employee in a role that requires background screening until the arrest is resolved in a way that the employer determines that the employee is still eligible for employment under this chapter.

 

(c) The employer must terminate the employment of any of its personnel found to be in noncompliance with the minimum standards of this chapter or place the employee in a position for which background screening is not required unless the employee is granted an exemption from disqualification pursuant to s. 435.07.

 

(3) Any employee who refuses to cooperate in such screening or refuses to timely submit the information necessary to complete the screening, including fingerprints if required, must be disqualified for employment in such position or, if employed, must be dismissed.

 

(4) There is no unemployment compensation or other monetary liability on the part of, and no cause of action for damages against, an employer that, upon notice of a conviction or arrest for a disqualifying offense listed under this chapter, terminates the person against whom the report was issued or who was arrested, regardless of whether or not that person has filed for an exemption pursuant to this chapter.

 

History.—s. 47, ch. 95-228; s. 40, ch. 2010-114.

 

1Note.—Section 58, ch. 2010-114, provides that “[t]he changes made by this act are intended to be prospective in nature. It is not intended that persons who are employed or licensed on the effective date of this act be rescreened until such time as they are otherwise required to be rescreened pursuant to law, at which time they must meet the requirements for screening as set forth in this act.”

 

1435.07 Exemptions from disqualification.—Unless otherwise provided by law, the provisions of this section apply to exemptions from disqualification for disqualifying offenses revealed pursuant to background screenings required under this chapter, regardless of whether those disqualifying offenses are listed in this chapter or other laws.

 

(1) The head of the appropriate agency may grant to any employee otherwise disqualified from employment an exemption from disqualification for:

 

(a) Felonies for which at least 3 years have elapsed since the applicant for the exemption has completed or been lawfully released from confinement, supervision, or sanction for the disqualifying felony;

(b) Misdemeanors prohibited under any of the statutes cited in this chapter or under similar statutes of other jurisdictions for which the applicant for the exemption has completed or been lawfully released from confinement, supervision, or sanction;

(c) Offenses that were felonies when committed but that are now misdemeanors and for which the applicant for the exemption has completed or been lawfully released from confinement, supervision, or sanction; or

(d) Findings of delinquency. For offenses that would be felonies if committed by an adult and the record has not been sealed or expunged, the exemption may not be granted until at least 3 years have elapsed since the applicant for the exemption has completed or been lawfully released from confinement, supervision, or sanction for the disqualifying offense.

For the purposes of this subsection, the term “felonies” means both felonies prohibited under any of the statutes cited in this chapter or under similar statutes of other jurisdictions.

(2) Persons employed, or applicants for employment, by treatment providers who treat adolescents 13 years of age and older who are disqualified from employment solely because of crimes under s. 817.563, s. 893.13, or s. 893.147 may be exempted from disqualification from employment pursuant to this chapter without application of the waiting period in paragraph (1)(a).

 

(3)(a) In order for the head of an agency to grant an exemption to any employee, the employee must demonstrate by clear and convincing evidence that the employee should not be disqualified from employment. Employees seeking an exemption have the burden of setting forth clear and convincing evidence of rehabilitation, including, but not limited to, the circumstances surrounding the criminal incident for which an exemption is sought, the time period that has elapsed since the incident, the nature of the harm caused to the victim, and the history of the employee since the incident, or any other evidence or circumstances indicating that the employee will not present a danger if employment or continued employment is allowed.

 

(b) The agency may consider as part of its deliberations of the employee’s rehabilitation the fact that the employee has, subsequent to the conviction for the disqualifying offense for which the exemption is being sought, been arrested for or convicted of another crime, even if that crime is not a disqualifying offense.

 

(c) The decision of the head of an agency regarding an exemption may be contested through the hearing procedures set forth in chapter 120. The standard of review by the administrative law judge is whether the agency’s intended action is an abuse of discretion.

 

(4)(a) Disqualification from employment under this chapter may not be removed from, nor may an exemption be granted to, any personnel who is found guilty of, regardless of adjudication, or who has entered a plea of nolo contendere or guilty to, any felony covered by s. 435.03 or s. 435.04 solely by reason of any pardon, executive clemency, or restoration of civil rights.

 

(b) Disqualification from employment under this chapter may not be removed from, nor may an exemption be granted to, any person who is a:

1. Sexual predator as designated pursuant to s. 775.21;

2. Career offender pursuant to s. 775.261; or

3. Sexual offender pursuant to s. 943.0435, unless the requirement to register as a sexual offender has been removed pursuant to s. 943.04354.

 

(5) Exemptions granted by one agency shall be considered by subsequent agencies, but are not binding on the subsequent agency.

History.—s. 47, ch. 95-228; s. 47, ch. 2000-349; s. 64, ch. 2001-62; s. 29, ch. 2004-267; s. 9, ch. 2005-128; s. 41, ch. 2010-114.

1Note.—Section 58, ch. 2010-114, provides that “[t]he changes made by this act are intended to be prospective in nature. It is not intended that persons who are employed or licensed on the effective date of this act be rescreened until such time as they are otherwise required to be rescreened pursuant to law, at which time they must meet the requirements for screening as set forth in this act.”

 

1435.08 Payment for processing of fingerprints and state criminal records checks.—The employer or the employee is responsible for paying the costs of screening. Payment shall be submitted to the Department of Law Enforcement with the request for screening. The appropriate agency is responsible for collecting and paying any fee related to fingerprints retained on its behalf to the Department of Law Enforcement for costs resulting from the fingerprint information retention services. The amount of the annual fee and procedures for the submission and retention of fingerprint information and for the dissemination of search results shall be established by rule of the Department of Law Enforcement.

 

History.—s. 47, ch. 95-228; s. 209, ch. 99-8; s. 48, ch. 2000-349; s. 42, ch. 2010-114.

1Note.—Section 58, ch. 2010-114, provides that “[t]he changes made by this act are intended to be prospective in nature. It is not intended that persons who are employed or licensed on the effective date of this act be rescreened until such time as they are otherwise required to be rescreened pursuant to law, at which time they must meet the requirements for screening as set forth in this act.”

 

435.09 Confidentiality of personnel background check information.—No criminal or juvenile information obtained under this section may be used for any purpose other than determining whether persons meet the minimum standards for employment or for an owner or director of a covered service provider. The criminal records and juvenile records obtained by the department or by an employer are exempt from s. 119.07(1).

 

History.—s. 47, ch. 95-228; s. 282, ch. 96-406; s. 49, ch. 2000-349.

435.10 Sharing of personnel information among employers.—Every employer of employees covered by this chapter shall furnish copies of personnel records for employees or former employees to any other employer requesting this information pursuant to this section. Information contained in the records may include, but is not limited to, disciplinary matters and any reason for termination. Any employer releasing such records pursuant to this chapter shall be considered to be acting in good faith and may not be held liable for information contained in such records, absent a showing that the employer maliciously falsified such records.

 

History.—s. 47, ch. 95-228.

435.11 Penalties.—

(1) It is a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083, for any person willfully, knowingly, or intentionally to:

(a) Fail, by false statement, misrepresentation, impersonation, or other fraudulent means, to disclose in any application for voluntary or paid employment a material fact used in making a determination as to such person’s qualifications for a position of special trust.

(b) Use records information for purposes other than screening for employment or release records information to other persons for purposes other than screening for employment.

(2) It is a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084, for any person willfully, knowingly, or intentionally to use juvenile records information for any purposes other than specified in this section or to release such information to other persons for purposes other than specified in this section.

History.—s. 47, ch. 95-228; s. 283, ch. 96-406.

 

 

Categories
AHCA Background Screening APD Background Screening DCF Background Screening

Level 2 Background Screening for Hospitals in Florida

The chief compliant officer for one of the Florida’s largest Health Care networks contacted us and requested more information about options on how hospital staff can be fingerprinted as part of Level 2 Background Screening.

 

Currently the Level 2 Background Clearance is required by AHCA only for hospital staff working within mental health or psychiatric units, hospitals’ CEO and CFO. However, we wanted to provide our potential client with all possible options, especially counting that network includes several children’s hospitals and NICU units.

 

The Letter

Dear, South Florida’s Leading Health Care Network.

We wanted to make a sufficiently broad research, including advice from a legal consultant before we responded with set of solutions IDENTICO may offer to your organization which includes numerous hospitals.

The answers were in FAQ format, and we decided to share it will all readers who may find these solutions interesting and appropriate for own healthcare facility.

 

1.      What does Level 2 Background Check refers to?

 

Level 2 Background Check is the term used in Florida Statutes to convey the method of the criminal history record check and the extent of the data searched. However, the terms may also refer to certain disqualifying offenses if certain statutes are referenced. Level 2 is the term that pertains only to Florida and is not used by the FBI or other states. They are defined in Chapter 435, Florida Statutes (F.S.), but are used elsewhere in statute without definition and appear not to be associated with all of the provisions in Chapter 435, F.S.

Level 2 generally refers to a state and national fingerprint based check and consideration of disqualifying offenses, and applies to those employees designated by law as holding positions of responsibility or trust. Section 435.04, F.S., mandates Level 2 security background investigations are conducted on employees, defined as individuals required by law to be fingerprinted pursuant to Chapter 435, F.S.

 

It should be noted that both the state and national criminal history databases can be searched for arrests, warrants, and other information pertaining to an individual. However, neither database has the capability of searching for specific offenses within an individual record.

 

2.      Is there a presumption against negligent hiring when an employer conducts a background investigation of a prospective employee?

 

Yes. Pursuant to Section 768.096, F.S., in the case of an intentional tort, an employer is presumed not to have been negligent in hiring an employee if before hiring the employee, the employer conducted a background investigation of the prospective employee and the information did not reveal any information that reasonably demonstrated unsuitability of the prospective employee for the work to be performed or for general employment. The background investigation must include a criminal background investigation.

The statute specifically provides if an employer requests and obtains from FDLE a state criminal history record check; the employer has satisfied the criminal background investigation requirement for the presumption.

 

3.      What are the requirements for a national criminal history record check?

 

National Check: The following must be in place, as required by the FBI, to receive a national criminal history record check:

 

  • A statute must exist as a result of a legislative enactment;
  • It must require the fingerprinting of applicants who are subject to a national criminal history record check;
  • It must expressly (“submit to the FBI”) or by implication (“submit for a national check”) authorize the use of FBI records for the screening of applicants;
  • It must identify the specific category(ies) of licensees/employees falling within its authority;
  • It must not be against public policy;
  • It may not authorize receipt of the criminal history record information by a private entity;
  • The recipient of the criminal history record check results must be a governmental entity;
  • The entity must sign a User Agreement indicating it will comply with the terms and conditions set forth in rule by the FBI; and
  • The fingerprint submission must be first processed through the state repository for a search of its records.

 

4.      What information from a state and national criminal history background check can be disclosed to a private employer?

 

Pursuant to federal law, regulatory and employing agencies may not share any information obtained from a state and national criminal history record check with a private entity. However, these agencies can indicate whether or not the person is eligible for licensing or employment based on their established criteria. Prior to being granted access to the records, authorized agencies must sign a Criminal Justice or Non-Criminal Justice User Agreement with FDLE agreeing to abide by state and federal law.

 

5.      Can a copy of the FDLE and FBI criminal record be provided to applicants if they are denied employment, licensing, or the opportunity to volunteer?

 

Yes. Applicants may be shown their own criminal record. A copy may also be provided, however, applicants must be cautioned the record may not be used for any other purpose. Applicants are not allowed to provide a copy of the record to any other organization.

 

6.      Is sealed or expunged information released as part of a criminal history record check?

 

Sealed information is disseminated only to those agencies authorized by provisions in Section 943.059, F.S. Agencies not specified in the statutes are not provided sealed criminal history information. Expunged criminal history information is not disseminated. However, a notification that a record has been expunged is provided to agencies consistent with provisions in Section 943.0585, F.S. Agencies not specified in the statutes are not provided the expunged notification.

 

7.      If a state and national criminal history record check is conducted, is it necessary to conduct a separate check of the sex offender registry for registered sex offenders?

 

No. If the state and national fingerprint based criminal his story record check is completed, the agency will be notified of all persons designated as sexual predators or offenders in Florida and in the national system.

 

8.      What is the Civil Workflow Control System (CWCS)?

 

Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) developed the Civil Workflow Control System (CWCS). CWCS, pronounced “QUICKS”, is an automated system used to receive, process and respond to electronic requests for applicant criminal history record checks. Processing that once took several weeks with fingerprint cards now takes 24 to 72 hours with electronic submissions. CWCS allows different types of applicants to be scanned on a single device and allows input from a variety of livescan devices that adhere to FDLE and FBI standards and requirements.

 

9.      How long does it take to complete a state and national criminal history record check when fingerprints are submitted electronically?

 

Typically, state and national criminal history record checks are completed within two to three working days of receiving the electronic submission. When a transaction is complete within the CWCS system, the results are posted to Certified Mail, a secure FDLE web mail application. The results will include both state and national criminal history information, as well as any warrants and other information related to the individual.

 

A result notification email is sent to the email address designated by the customer and will contain a link to this Certified Mail application. This notification will also contain descriptive information specific to the transaction.

 

10.  When can a non-governmental agency receive the results of a state and national background check?

 

Non-governmental entities are not authorized to receive both state and national criminal history information under statutory licensing and employment provisions. The only time non-governmental entities are eligible to obtain national criminal history information is through the VECHS program.

 

11.  What is the Volunteer and Employee Criminal History System (VECHS) program?

 

The VECHS program allows for qualified entities to obtain state and national criminal history record checks on individuals working with children, the elderly or the disabled.

 

12.  What is a “qualified entity”? Who can obtain criminal history background checks under the VECHS and Section 943.0542, Florida Statutes?

 

To qualify for the VECHS Program, an entity must provide some type of “care” or “care placement services” for children, the elderly or the disabled; even if it is only a limited part of the entity’s overall business. Once qualified to participate in the program, an entity may request criminal history information on all current and prospective employees and volunteers, not only those who work with vulnerable persons. A qualified entity may also request criminal history information on employees or volunteers who have or who seek to have unsupervised access to the populations described above.

 

“Qualified entities” are authorized to obtain criminal history record information as described under the NCPA and related federal guidelines. Under the NCPA and Florida statute, a “qualified entity” is a business or organization, whether public, private, for profit, not-for-profit, or voluntary, that provides care or care placement services, including a business or organization that licenses or certifies others to provide care or care placement services. “Care” means the provision of care, treatment, education, training, instruction, supervision, or recreation to children, the elderly, or individuals with disabilities.

 

13.  How does an organization enroll in the VECHS program?

 

If an entity meets the criteria of a “qualified entity”, they may download and complete a copy of the VECHS Qualified Entity Application and the VECHS User Agreement at http://www.fdle.state.fl.us/BackgroundChecks or contact the VECHS Unit at (850) 410-VECHS (850-410-8324), to request a copy of each document.

 

14.  Can qualified entities share criminal history information with other qualified entities?

 

Yes. Criminal history information may be obtained from other VECHS entities, if the employee or volunteer agrees to this on the VECHS Waiver Statement and Agreement form, required to be signed when he/she was fingerprinted, and if the transfer of information is recorded by the other qualified entity on its Dissemination Log. The restrictions on this process are described in the User Agreement. Entities must contact the VECHS Unit at (850) 410-8324 for entity verification before sharing criminal history information.

 

We believe the FAQ was able to expose all key points of FBI Level 2 Background Screening. Here are the solutions your Health Care Network may decide to implement with IDENTICO’s involvement:

 

a)      Community Mental Health & Crisis Stabilization Units- Level 2 is required by AHCA, FS 435.04 & 394.875 (Adults) and DCF FS 394, 435.04 (mental health facilities and programs providing care for children). Owner / Administrator, Financial Officer, Employees and Contractors Providing Personal Care/Services, Employees that have access to client property, funds or living areas, Directors, Professional Clinicians, Staff Members and Volunteers.

 

b)      Hospital, Surgery Centers and Diagnostic-imaging centers – only CEOs and CFOs are required by Florida Law to go through statutory background screening. Fortunately VECHS program makes FBI Level 2 screening available for all Staff Members. This type of organizations have a high chance to fit under the description of “qualified entity” and establishing VECHS number shall not be very challenging. Each entity will have a separate VECHS “E” (Employee) and “V” (Volunteer) number. As a live-scan vendor IDENTICO will keep that information on file ready for every screening.

 

c)      The cost. If your Health Care Network elects to follow with such screening procedures, and IDENTICO is granted with an opportunity to exclusively offer the screening services, we will put all efforts to make the process as convenient and cost effective as possible. Our mobile units have the capacity to travel to all South Florida locations, no stress or hassle for employees. Our technicians are trained and certified. We possess both liability and property insurance, IDENTICO is liable for any damages which may possibly occur to costly live scan equipment, client facilities or employees during the scope of our services. Keeping potential volume and value of having your Health Network as the client in our mind, we are willing to be highly competitive and flexible with payment option and rates, and will be honored with opportunity to discuss it private meeting.

 

We assume there may be several questions you may need to be answered, therefore feel free to contact us anytime.

 

Best regards,

IDENTICO LLC

Office: (954) 239-8590

Fax: (954) 367-2256

www.myidentico.com

Categories
AHCA Background Screening

Background Screening Procedures as part of Health Care Licensing by AHCA

The Background Screening rules of Agency for Health care Administration are set according to Florida Administrative Code, Section 59-A35.090.

 

59A-35.090 Background Screening.

 

(1) Definitions:

(a) “Arrest Report” means the detailed narrative written by the arresting law enforcement officer explaining the circumstances of the arrest.

 

(b) “Disposition” means the sentencing or other final settlement of a criminal case which shall include, regardless of adjudication, a plea of nolo contendere or guilty, or a conviction by a judge or jury.

 

(c) “Disqualifying Offense” means any criminal offense prohibited in Section 435.03, 435.04 or 408.809(5), F.S.

 

(d) “Exemption from Disqualification” means an exemption granted by the Agency following a review of the Application for Exemption, AHCA Form 3010-0019, October 2009, hereby incorporated by reference, and an informal hearing, if appropriate, during which the individual must present clear and convincing evidence to support a reasonable belief that he or she has been rehabilitated and does not present a danger to the health, safety, and welfare of the patient or individual as described in Section 435.07, F.S.

 

(e) “FBI” means the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

 

(f) “FDLE” means the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

 

(g) “Level 1 Screening” means an assessment of the criminal history record obtained from the FDLE to determine whether screened individuals have any disqualifying offenses pursuant to Section 435.03 or 408.809(5), F.S. An analysis and review of court dispositions and arrest reports may be required to make a final determination.

 

(h) “Level 2 Screening” means an assessment of the criminal history record obtained through a fingerprint search through the FDLE and FBI to determine whether screened individuals have any disqualifying offenses pursuant to Section 435.04 or 408.809(5), F.S. An analysis and review of court dispositions and arrest reports may be required to make a final determination.

 

(2) Processing Screening Requests, Required Documents and Fees.

 

(a) A provider may conduct Level 1 background screening for employees either directly through the FDLE or through the Agency. Requests through the Agency must be submitted using the Agency’s background screening website at: http://www.ahca.myflorida.com/MCHQ/Long_Term_Care/Background_S creening/logon.shtml. A user code and password is required for use of this site. A request for a Level 1 screening through the Agency must be accompanied by the cost required by the FDLE to pay for the cost of processing the request.

 

(b) Persons required to undergo Level 2 background screening must submit an Applicant Fingerprint Card, incorporated herein by reference, and available from the appropriate Agency licensure unit or by submitting a request to: bgscreen@ahca.myflorida.com. A health care provider licensed pursuant to this chapter may submit a Level 2 request and make payment electronically or by mail. A request for a Level 2 screening through the Agency must be accompanied by the cost required by the FDLE and the FBI to pay for the cost of processing the request.

 

1. Electronic submissions must be made through the Agency’s background screening web site. The completed fingerprint card must be mailed to the Background Screening Unit at 2727 Mahan Drive, MS 40,Tallahassee, Florida 32308.

 

2. Mailed requests must be submitted to the Background Screening Unit at 2727 Mahan Drive, MS 40, Tallahassee, Florida 32308.

 

3. If a fingerprint card is rejected by the FBI due to illegible prints, the individual must submit a second fingerprint card in accordance with the guidelines established by the FBI. The second card must be submitted to the Agency within 21 days of the Agency’s request or the screening request will be considered withdrawn. If withdrawn, the individual must submit a new fingerprint card accompanied by the required fee.

 

(3) Screening of Administrators, Owners, Chief Financial Officers and Controlling Interests.

 

(a) Persons required to undergo Level 2 background screening in accordance with a licensure application, must submit the completed and signed fingerprint card and screening fee with an application for licensure to the appropriate Agency licensing unit.

 

(b) As an alternative to a new background screen, persons required to undergo Level 2 background screening in accordance with Section 408.809, F.S., that have been screened within the previous 5 years by the Agency, Department of Health, Department of Children and Family Services, Agency for Persons with Disabilities or Department of Financial Services, or if the applicant has a certificate of authority to operate a continuing care retirement community, may submit to the appropriate Agency licensing unit:

 

1. A copy of the background screening result, and

 

2. An Affidavit of Compliance with Background Screening Requirements, AHCA Form 3100-0008, October 2009, herein incorporated by reference, and available from the Agency for Health Care Administration at: http://www.ahca.myflorida.com/Publications/Forms/HQA.shtml.

 

(4) Results of Screening and Notification.

 

(a) Final results of background screening requests will be provided to the requesting provider through the Agency’s secure web site.

 

(b) When the dispositional information of a potentially disqualifying offense is unclear or not present in a criminal history from a Level I request, a notice will be sent to the requesting licensee or entity to obtain the arrest report and dispositional information from the individual being screened. The information must then be forwarded to the Agency for a final determination or show such information cannot be obtained. If a Level 2 criminal history is incomplete, a certified letter will be sent to the individual being screened requesting the arrest report and dispositional information. If the letter is returned unclaimed, a copy of the letter will be sent by regular mail. For Level 1 and Level 2, the missing information must be filed with the Agency within 30 days of the Agency’s request, or the individual is subject to automatic disqualification in accordance with Section 435.05(1)(d), F.S.

 

(c) When the Agency or the provider obtains information indicating an individual has a disqualifying offense pursuant to Chapter 435, F.S., the individual is prohibited from working in a position that requires background screening until such time as the individual has applied for and been determined to be exempt from such disqualification.

 

(d) An alleged offense is not disqualifying until such time as there has been a disposition.

 

(5) Exemption from Disqualification.

 

(a) Requests for an exemption from disqualification shall be submitted in writing to the Agency using the “Application for Exemption from Disqualification” AHCA Form 3010-0019, October 2009. This form may be obtained from the Agency for Health Care Administration, Background Screening Unit, 2727 Mahan Drive, MS #40, Tallahassee, Florida 32308 or through the Agency’s website at: http://www.ahca.myflorida.com/MCHQ/Long_Term_Care/Background_Screening/exemption.shtml.

 

(b) Individuals that are licensed or certified in a profession under the jurisdiction of the Department of Health must apply for an exemption to the appropriate licensing or certifying board at the Department of Health unless the individual will be working in a position other than for which they are licensed or certified.

 

(c) The individual shall bear the burden of setting forth clear and convincing evidence of rehabilitation which includes any information indicating the individual presents no danger to the safety or well being of others. The individual must present such evidence as arrest reports, court dispositions, parole/probation information, letters from employers, and personal references. Other documents that may be included are records of successful participation in a rehabilitation program, further education or training, community or church involvement, special awards or recognition or testimony by self or others.

 

(d) An “Application for Exemption” will not be reviewed until all required documents are obtained. If the application is deemed incomplete after 30 days of receipt by the Agency, the application will be withdrawn.

 

(e) In deciding whether to grant or deny an exemption request, the Agency shall consider factors such as the facts and circumstances surrounding the disqualifying offense(s), the nature of the harm to the victim, whether the individual is on probation or parole, whether restitution has been made, the length of time since the last offense, the history of the person since the disqualifying offense(s), work experience, personal references, performance evaluations, probation or parole violations, education, other evidence of rehabilitation, and the honesty and candor of the disqualified individual.

 

(f) Any exemption granted by the Agency is limited to the disqualifying offense or offenses committed prior to the date of the request for exemption.

 

(g) The Agency shall void any exemption granted to an individual when there is evidence that information which would adversely affect the decision was not made available at the time of the determination or there is a disposition of a new disqualifying offense since the date the exemption was granted.

 

(6) Unless otherwise specified, information requested pursuant to this section must be filed with the Agency within 21 days of the Agency’s request.

 

Rulemaking Authority 408.819 FS. Law Implemented 408.809, 408.810 FS. History–New 7-14-10.

 

All Level 2 screening requests to  AHCA must be submitted electronically. The Agency for Health Care Administration will no longer process Level 1 or Level 2 screening requests or fees after July 31, 2010. Any Level 1 or Level 2 screening request and fees submitted to the Agency’s Background Screening Section after July 31, 2010 will be returned to the sender unprocessed.

 

If the AHCA provider who you work for is located in Miami, Broward, Palm Beach or Martin counties, please call IDENTICO LLC today, for  office or mobile fingerprinting appointment. IDENTICO is FDLE approved Live Scan vendor, and we use electronic fingerprinting solutions in transmitting your fingerprints for FBI Level 2 Background Check and AHCA will get the results of screening in as less as 72 hours. The cost of screening is $80.00. Visit our official website www.myidentico.com or call us today (954) 239-8590.

 

We have an open door policy at our office located at 3948 Pembroke Road, Suite E, Pembroke Park, FL, 33021, however if you would like to schedule an appointment at certain time, please visit http://www.myidentico.com/hitappoint/ and we’ll serve you first regardless of any wait line.

 

Bring your state ID/DL, know your SSN, and we’ll help you with locating your AHCA Number if you don’t know it.

 

Sincerely,

 

The team of IDENTICO LLC.

Categories
VECHS Program

What is the VECHS screening and what entities are eligible to use it?

VECHS (pronounced “vecks”) is an acronym for the Volunteer & Employee Criminal History System at the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE). The VECHS program was implemented in 1999 and is authorized by the National Child Protection Act (NCPA) (1993), as amended, and Florida Statute 943.0542 (1999).

 

The mission of the program is to protect children, the elderly, and the disabled by Checking the Background of Persons Who Work or Volunteer with Children, the Elderly, or the Disabled Under The National Child Protection Act (1993), as amended, and section 943.0542, Florida Statutes (1999)

 

Through the VECHS program, FDLE and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) provide to qualified organizations (not individuals) in Florida state and national criminal history record information on applicants, employees, and volunteers. With this criminal history information, the organizations can more effectively screen out those current and prospective volunteers and employees who are not suitable for contact with children, the elderly, or the disabled.

 

Generally, to be qualified to participate in the VECHS program, an organization (public, private, profit, or non-profit) must provide “care” or “care placement services”, as defined in the above laws, to children, the elderly, or the disabled.

 

The VECHS program is not available to organizations currently required to obtain criminal history record checks on their employees and/or volunteers under other statutory provisions, such as day care centers. Those organizations must continue to follow the statutory mandates that specifically apply to them. If, however, an organization is required to obtain state and national checks on only specific types of employees or volunteers, the VECHS program may be able to process requests for state and national checks on the organization’s other employees or volunteers.

 

To become a qualified organization and to obtain criminal history record information through the VECHS program at FDLE, an organization will need to do the following:

 

Submit an application to FDLE explaining what functions the organization performs that serve children, elderly or disabled persons;
  Sign an agreement that the criminal history information would be used only to screen employees and volunteers of that organization for employment purposes;
  Submit $54.25 for each employee or $33.25 for each volunteer fingerprint card submission.
  Submit $43.25 for each employee or $33.25 for each volunteer electronic submission;
If an organization becomes qualified and provides the required information for criminal history record requests, FDLE, with the assistance of the FBI, will provide the organization with the following:
An indication that the person has no criminal history, i.e., no serious arrests in state or national databases, if there are none;
  The criminal history record (RAP sheet) that shows arrests/and or convictions for Florida and other states, if any;
  Notification of any warrants or domestic violence injunctions that the person may have.
Categories
AHCA Background Screening

How does AHCA determines the eligibility for employment?

After receiving Level 2 Background Screening results from FDLE/FBI, AHCA will look if there are Disqualifying criminal offenses in the report. Descriptions of such offenses are listed in Florida Statute (F.S.), Chapter 435 and Florida Statute (F.S.), Chapter 408.809 . If a person is found to have a new disqualifying offense, or is arrested for any of these offenses, he/she is not eligible to work in a position that requires screening unless an exemption is granted. [ Reference 408.809(4) and 435.04, 435.05]

 

Existing employees or contractors screened, qualified and hired before August 1, 2010, that have a disqualifying offense revealed during a rescreening that was not disqualifying at the time of the prior screening, may continue to work, if the employer agrees, while applying for an exemption from disqualification as long as the employee/contractor is eligible to apply for an exemption and the application is received by the appropriate agency within 30 days after receipt of the rescreening results. This provision does not apply to staff hired before August 1, 2010, who has never been screened. [ Reference 408.809(4)]

 

Criminal history reports must be complete to render a decision. If a report is missing the disposition of an arrest for a disqualifying offense(s) the person screened will be notified by certified mail to obtain additional information from the arresting jurisdiction.

 

To correct information on a criminal history report for an offense that occurred in Florida, contact the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

 

The Agency will review all screening results and a determination of “Eligible” or “Not Eligible” will be posted on our secure website. Notifications by mail will no longer be available. The website will also indicate if the individual has applied for or has a decision for an Exemption from Disqualification.

 

Providers may access the screening results through the Agency’s secure website at: Background Screening Results Web Site

 

The new law added additional disqualifying criminal offenses (includes luring and enticing a child; voyeurism, video voyeurism; and unlawful sexual activity with certain minors).

 

A health care provider may not hire a new employee or contract with a person until a final screening determination of “Eligible” has been made or the individual is “Not Eligible” but has been granted an Exemption from Disqualification from the Agency or the Department of Health (if seeking employment in a position that requires professional licensure or certification through the Department).

 

Each employee/contractor required to undergo screening must attest upon hiring that they meet the requirements for employment and agree to inform the employer immediately if arrested for any disqualifying offense. This form must be kept in the employee’s personnel file. The following Affidavit of Compliance with Background Screening may be used for this requirement.

 

If an employee/contractor has an arrest for a disqualifying offense and is awaiting sentencing he/she is Not Eligible to work until there is a final court disposition and the individual is determined by the Agency to be eligible.

 

Categories
Criminal Justice Program Students Background Screening

Fingerprinting for Criminal Justice Program Students in Florida

The Level 2 Background Screening and digital fingerprinting is required as part of students application for admission into criminal justice training school program approved by the Florida Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission.

 

Florida students attending 4-year accredited colleges and universities offering the Correctional Probation Training Program and all other criminal justice sciences or administration courses must comply with background screening procedures as set in F.S. 943.14(7)

 

943.14(7) Commission-certified criminal justice training schools; certificates and diplomas; exemptions; injunctive relief; fines.—

 

(7) Each criminal justice training school that offers law enforcement, correctional, or correctional probation officer basic recruit training, or selection center that provides applicant screening for criminal justice training schools, shall conduct a criminal history background check of an applicant prior to entrance into the basic recruit class. A complete set of fingerprints must be taken by an authorized criminal justice agency or by an employee of the criminal justice training school or selection center who is trained to take fingerprints. If the employing agency has previously taken a set of fingerprints from the applicant and has obtained a criminal history check of the applicant using the fingerprints, the requirements of this subsection shall be met when the employing agency submits to the criminal justice training school or selection center a letter stating the date on which the agency took the fingerprints of the applicant, a summary of the criminal history check based on the fingerprints, and a certification that the applicant is qualified to enroll in the basic recruit training program pursuant to s. 943.13. If the criminal justice training school or selection center takes the fingerprints, it shall submit the fingerprints to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for a statewide criminal history check, and forward the fingerprints to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for a national criminal history check. Applicants found through fingerprint processing to have pled guilty to or been convicted of a crime which would render the applicant unable to meet the minimum qualifications for employment as an officer as specified in s. 943.13(4) shall be removed from the pool of qualified candidates by the criminal justice training school or selection center.

 

F.S. 943.13 (4) Officers’ minimum qualifications for employment or appointment.

—On or after October 1, 1984, any person employed or appointed as a full-time, part-time, or auxiliary law enforcement officer or correctional officer; on or after October 1, 1986, any person employed as a full-time, part-time, or auxiliary correctional probation officer; and on or after October 1, 1986, any person employed as a full-time, part-time, or auxiliary correctional officer by a private entity under contract to the Department of Corrections, to a county commission, or to the Department of Management Services shall Not have been convicted of any felony or of a misdemeanor involving perjury or a false statement, or have received a dishonorable discharge from any of the Armed Forces of the United States. Any person who, after July 1, 1981, pleads guilty or nolo contendere to or is found guilty of any felony or of a misdemeanor involving perjury or a false statement is not eligible for employment or appointment as an officer, notwithstanding suspension of sentence or withholding of adjudication. Notwithstanding this subsection, any person who has pled nolo contendere to a misdemeanor involving a false statement, prior to December 1, 1985, and has had such record sealed or expunged shall not be deemed ineligible for employment or appointment as an officer.

 

The Criminal Justice Program Students Screening licensing is regulated by Florida Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission . In order to get fingerprinted as part of your admission application please contact your local law enforcement agency or IDENTICO LLC today. Visit our official website www.myidentico.com or call us today (954) 239-8590. We have an open door policy at our office located at 3948 Pembroke Road, Suite E, Pembroke Park, FL, 33021, however if you would like to schedule an appointment at certain time, please visit http://www.myidentico.com/hitappoint/ and we’ll serve you first regardless of any wait line. Live Scan fingerprinting services and submission for Level 2 Background Check are available if permitted by you college or university.

 

Sincerely,

IDENTICO LLC.

Categories
VECHS Program

Jessica Lunsford Act. Level 2 Backgroud Screening for School Districts and Private Schools.

The Jessica Lunsford Act was passed by the 2005 Florida Legislature and signed into law by Governor Bush following the assault and murder of Jessica Lunsford in Homosassa Springs, Florida. This crime was allegedly committed by an individual who had at one time worked as a subcontracted mason at Jessica Lunsford’s school. The Act focused primarily on increasing the measures used to monitor sexual offenders or predators. However, part of the Act specifically related to individuals with access to school district campuses. This Technical Assistance Paper (TAP) is to provide assistance to districts and contractual personnel to implement s. 1012.465, Florida Statutes, as amended by the 2005 Legislature.

 

Section 1012.465, Florida Statutes, now states:


(1) Non-instructional school district employees or contractual personnel who are permitted access on school grounds when students are present, who have direct contact with students or who have access to or control of school funds must meet Level 2 screening requirements as described in s. 1012.32, F.S. Contractual personnel shall include any vendor, individual, or entity under contract with the school board.
The statute, as amended, applies to three categories of either non-instructional or contractual personnel, all of whom must meet Level 2 background screening requirements, including those:


1. Who are permitted access on school grounds when students are present,
2. Who have direct contact with students, or
3. Who have access to or control of school funds.
The statute applies to such persons employed or contracted with any Florida public school district in any Florida public school, including:
-Traditional Public Schools
-Charter Schools
-Alternative Schools

District Responsibilities

 

1. Background Screening:
School districts must conduct the fingerprinting/background screening of noninstructional or contractual personnel at a location designated by the district using the code (ORI – Originating Agency Identifier) issued to the district by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE), and determine whether the individual has been convicted of a crime of moral turpitude.

 

2. Verification of Personnel on School Campuses:
For affected persons, each district must establish policies and procedures to ensure that only individuals who have undergone a background screening and have been approved to come on campus are allowed access on school grounds when students are present, or to have direct contact with students, or to have access or control over school funds.
In addition, each district must establish communication policies and procedures to ensure that all pertinent parties are notified when an individual terminates service with the district.

 

3. Sharing of Records:
Districts may share background screening results with other public school districts and are encouraged to do so to reduce the time and fiscal impact on certain service providers who may be providing contractual services in multiple districts.
Such persons may include:
– Vendors, including soda/milk/snack vendors under contract with the district
-Sports officials
-Construction contractors and subcontractors
-Senior ring, photography, or yearbook vendors

 

Should districts choose to share records, it is recommended that the cooperating districts execute a Memorandum of Understanding which clearly spells out the role to be played by each district. Any employee provided access to criminal history records should be cautioned as to the confidentiality of the information contained within the record, and should not discuss such information outside of those also legally allowed access to such record.

 

4. Maintenance of Records:
After receiving the initial background check results from the FDLE, the original submitting district will thereafter be electronically notified by FDLE, in writing, of any new arrests. The original submitting district should forward the arrest information to any districts with which they have shared the criminal record. In addition, s. 1012.32(3), F.S., requires each school district to inform the FDLE of any change in the affiliation, employment, or contractual status of an individual previously fingerprinted.

 

The prints of an individual who terminates service with a district and is later reengaged to provide additional services must be re-submitted to the FDLE. Those individuals who provide services on a periodic basis pursuant to an on-going contract and who do not effectively break service should continue to have their arrest record results transmitted to the district by the FDLE.

 

The requirements applicable to those entities receiving fingerprint background check results are set forth in Rule 11C-6.010, promulgated by the FDLE pursuant to authority in s. 1012.32(3), F.S.

 

IDENTICO LLC provides background screening services to several private schools, whose background screening policies are based on National Child Protection Act (NCPA) as well as on Jessica Lunsford Act. Such private educational entities are qualified to obtain Level II background screening through VECHS program. Volunteer and Employee Criminal History System (VECHS) program allows for qualified entities to obtain state and national criminal history record checks on individuals working with children, the elderly or the disabled.Under the NCPA and Florida statute, a “qualified entity” is a business or organization, whether public, private, for profit, not-for-profit, or voluntary, that provides care or care placement services, including a business or organization that licenses or certifies others to provide care or care placement services. “Care” means the provision of care, treatment, education, training, instruction, supervision, or recreation to children, the elderly, or individuals with disabilities.

 

If you work or volunteer for “qualified entity” and VECHS screening is required as part of your employment or volunteerism, please contact us today.  IDENTICO is FDLE authorized Live Scan vendor serving South Florida.  With any question related to Level 2 background checks please call us at (954) 239-8590 or visit us online at www.myidentico.com for more information. We provide Mobile Fingerprinting Services and would come to your facility to fingerprint any size groups. Visit our office located at 3948 Pembroke Road, Suite E, Pembroke Park, FL, 33021 for all fingerprinting, background screening or drug testing needs.

 

Categories
APD Background Screening DCF Background Screening VECHS Program

DCF Level 2 Background Screening and Fingerprinting for Summer Camps in Florida

Here are some important facts on background screening for Summer Camps in FAQ format:

 

What constitutes a summer camp?

 

Summer day camps” and “Summer 24-hour camps” are defined in Section 409.175 F.S. “Summer day camps” are recreational, educational, and other enrichment programs operated during summer vacations for children who are 5 years of age on or before September 1 and older. “Summer 24-hour camps” are recreational, educational, and other enrichment programs operated on a 24-hour basis during summer vacations for children who are 5 years of age on or before September 1 and older, that are not exclusively educational.

 

Requirements for athletic coaches are found in Section 943.0438 F.S. Background screening for paid or volunteer athletic coaches are not screened through the Department of Children and Families, they are screened using the Volunteer and Employee Criminal History System (VECHS) through the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE). Enforcement of requirements for athletic coaches would be the independent sanctioning authority.

 

Who has to be screened?

Personnel for the purposes of screening for summer day camps and summer 24-hour camps includes owners, operators, employees, and volunteers working in summer day camps and summer 24-hour camps providing care for children. Volunteers who assist on an intermittent basis for less than 10 hours per month do not need to be screened if a person who meets the screening requirement is always present and has the volunteer in his or her line of sight.

 

When do employees or volunteers have to be screened?

An employer may not hire, select, or otherwise allow an employee to have contact with any vulnerable person that would place the employee in a role that requires the background screening.

 

How are international counselors background screened?

They must complete a Level 2 Background Screening upon arriving in Florida. Although not required by law, a background check from their home country should be requested. Most organizations that assist with identifying international counselors do provide a background check.

 

Are employees or volunteers under the age of 18 required to be fingerprinted?

Yes. There are no exclusions under the statute for those under age 18 from being fingerprinted. However, if the employee or volunteer under 18 is not providing direct care for children, they would not have to be fingerprinted.

 

What are the differences between Level 1 and Level 2 Background Screening for employment and where are the lists of offenses that will preclude potential employees from working? What are local law enforcement checks? What are the cost differences? Do we need to do a local sheriff’s check?

The requirements for Level 1 and Level 2 Employment Background Screening are found in Chapter 435 Florida Statutes. Level 1 Background Screening requires an employment history check, statewide criminal correspondence checks through FDLE (name-based check), and a check of the Dru Sjodin National Sex Offender Public Website and may include local law enforcement checks.

 

Level 2 Background Screening requires fingerprinting for statewide criminal history checks through FDLE and national criminal history checks through the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and may include local law enforcement checks.

The list of disqualifications from employment is found in Section 435.04 F.S.

 

They include:

 

  • Anyone arrested for and awaiting final disposition of prohibited offense, regardless of adjudication
  • Anyone who has entered a plea of nolo contendere or guilty to a prohibited offense
  • Any case where the applicant was adjudicated delinquent and the record of committing a prohibited offense has not been sealed or expunged

 

Local law enforcement checks are completed by local sheriff and police departments. They are recommended because occasionally there may be information related to arrests or calls to the applicant’s address that are not included in the FDLE record.

 

The costs can vary and depend upon the Live Scan vendor selected. Most costs are listed on our website under the section Live Scan Location and Interactive Map.

 

Are volunteer athletic coach screened under this law?

No. Background screening for volunteer athletic coaches is authorized under s. 943.0438 F.S. through the Volunteer and Employee Criminal History System.

 

What are the differences between this law and the Jessica Lunsford Act?

The Jessica Lunsford Act found in Section 1012.465 F.S. requires non-instructional school district employees or contract personnel who are permitted access on school grounds when students are presents meet Level 2 Background Screening requirements as described in s. 1012.32 F.S.

 

Is there any limit on how far in advance you can screen?

No earlier than 60 days before beginning employment.

 

How often do they have to be screened?

Section 409.1757 F.S. outlines when persons are not required to be refingerprinted or rescreened. If an employee or applicant has been fingerprinted or screened as required in chapter 393, 394, 397, 402, and 409, or teachers pursuant to chapter 1012, who have not been unemployed for more than 90 days and attest to the completion of the fingerprinting and compliance with the standards related to good moral character.

 

What are ORI and OCA numbers? What is the process to get an agency ORI Code and OCA Code and how long does that take?

The ORI number (Originating Agency Identifier). This number is provided by FDLE and identifies the agency requesting the criminal history check and for what purpose.

The OCA (Controlling Agency Identifier). This number is provided by DCF and identifies the provider requesting the background check.

Without the ORI number and the OCA number, FDLE cannot process the request and the DCF will not know where the screening results are to be sent.

The DCF will need the following:

 

Facility/Camp:

Name
Physical Address
Mailing Address
Valid E-mail
Contact Person (Owner/Operator)
Contact Person Phone Number

 

This information can be sent to the following email address: bgs1116@dcf.state.fl.us

Upon registration, you will be provided a DCF Agency Identifier (ORI) and a DCF Live Scan OCA through email.

 

What if we have already done the VECHS check – is this sufficient?

No. DCF is responsible for ensuring persons working in summer camps meet the requirements for background screening. VECHS checks are not allowed to be shared with the Department.

 

What if we have already done fingerprint checks, but not through the Live Scan process – do those have to be redone? Can fingerprints be done using hard cards?

 

If they meet the Level 2 requirements, were completed within the last 5 years, and there has not been a 90 day break in service, they would not need to be redone.

Fingerprints submitted using hard cards are permissible until 2012. However, it will delay receiving the results for 4-6 weeks or longer.

 

Where do the records need to be kept? Is it the same for the Affidavit of Good Moral Character?

The results from the background screening and the Affidavit of Good Moral Conduct should be maintained in your personnel files.

 

Who will be enforcing this? Can we expect to be monitored or inspected, or will this happen when a complaint is lodged against a program?

 

DCF has the authority to ensure compliance. Currently, summer camps are only monitored when a complaint has been made related to noncompliance with background screening. However, we are reviewing the requirements and more information related to enforcement will be released in the near future.

 

Why isn’t there a state database where I can verify if someone has already been checked?

Currently, there are limitations on sharing information between agencies. Agencies work together and when possible, the DCF will accept Level 2 Letters of Clearance completed by other entities such as school boards, or the Agency for Health Care Administration.

 

Is all necessary information collected with the fingerprint, or are there other forms that have to be completed and retained by us, or returned to DCF?

For completion of the Level 2 Background Screening, the information provided to the Live Scan Vendor is sufficient. Additional information from the applicant may be required if a criminal history is noted.

 

When does a summer camp have to be licensed by DCF?

Summer camps are not licensed by DCF.

 

Does the State require any additional training of employees hired by local agencies for summer programs?

No.

What are the counties that are doing their own licensing, when are they allowed to do their own licensing, and can they require a program that is exempt in State statute to be licensed under their county authority? Where can we find contact information on those county licensing boards/units?

 

The State does not require licensure of summer camps. There may be local ordinances that do require licensure. This information would be found locally.

Is there a website for more answers on DCF background screening requirements?

 

Yes. The Department website for background screening is: http://www.dcfbackgroundscreening.com. As information or updates are available, they will be added to our website.