Can you force employees to take a Polygraph Lie Detector Test?suspicion of theft
Suspicion of Theft in the Workplace
You would be well served to call us before you approach this topic with your employees.
We have forms, to help you through this situation. The first test is, $500. The fees is reduced to $250 each, for 3 or more tests. But, once you have consulted with us, and the forms in your hands, and begin the process we suggest, you might find the problem solves itself. This consultation fee is $500, and will be used a deposit for the tests.
In cases of suspicion of theft, only those employees who had access to the stolen property may be tested, and only with their willful and written formal consent, consistant with State and Federal law.
We will email you the requirements and restrictions from the State of California if you are considering polygraphing your employees.
Preemployment Polygraphs in Law Enforcement, and Other Companies
(the following is supplied by the American Polygraph Association).
The Employee Polygraph Protection Act of 1988 prohibits much, but not all pre-employment polygraph testing. Testing of employees is permitted to solve an employer’s economic loss. In most cases, no employer may require a prospective or current employee to take a polygraph examination as a condition of employment or continued employment. However, no State prohibits polygraph testing in all settings. Most of these states make exceptions for testing of certain occupational groups.
For instance, we do a great deal of work for the LAPD, and for the LA County Sheriff.
How does EPPA affect businesses which are not exempt?
In general, businesses cannot request, suggest or require any job applicant to take a pre-employment polygraph examination. Secondly, businesses can request a current employee to take a polygraph examination or suggest to such a person that a polygraph examination be taken, only when specific conditions have been satisfied. However, the employer cannot require current employees to take and examination, and if an employee refuses a request or suggestion, the employer cannot discipline or discharge the employee based on the refusal to submit to the examination.
What are the conditions that an employer must meet in order to ask a current employee to take a polygraph? The American Polygraph Association is furnishing the following information, which it believes is in good faith, and conforms with the Department of Labor’s Regulations relating to polygraph tests for employees. This information is considered only as a guideline to assist in complying with the Act and Regulations, and the American Polygraph Association is disclaiming any liability in connection therewith. Employers should develop their own forms, using their own company name, and should also review their final forms through their own legal counsel.
I. Checklist for the Employer
1. The incident must be an ongoing, specific investigation.
2. It must be an identifiable economic loss to the employer.
3. Obtain a copy of the Employer Polygraph Protection Act of 1988.
4. Provide the employee with a written statement that includes: a. identification of the company and location of employee b. description of the loss or activity under investigation c. location of the loss d. specific amount of the loss e. type of economic loss f. how the employee had access to the loss Note: access alone is not sufficient grounds for polygraph testing g. what kind of reasonable suspicion there is to suspect the employee of being involved in the loss
5. The Statement provided to employee MUST be signed by someone other than the polygraph examiner, who is authorized to legally bind the employee, and MUST be retained by the employer for at least 3 years.
6. Read the Notice to Examinee to the employee, which should be signed, timed, dated and witnessed.
7. Provide the employee with 48 hours advanced notice (not counting weekends or holidays) to the date and time of the scheduled polygraph test.
8. Provide employee with written notice of the date, time and location of the polygraph test, including written directions if the test is to be conducted at a location other than at the place of employment.
9. Maintain a statement of adverse actions taken against the employee following a polygraph test.
10. Conduct an additional interview of employee prior to any adverse action following a polygraph test.
11. Maintain records of ALL of the above for a minimum of 3 years.
12. Employees may not waive their rights.
13. Police and investigators are not exempt and must comply if they are conducting an employment related polygraph test, i.e. when conducting a polygraph test on an internal theft for a missing deposit. Information about a polygraph provided to the employer by a police officer or investigator is prohibited under the Act, since employers are not allowed to use, accept or inquire about the results.
14. There is a $10,000 penalty for EACH violation of the law.
15. Check out the credentials of the polygraph examiner that you use and verify that the examiner meets EPPA requirements. Never hesitate to ask for written proof of licensing, liability insurance, etc.
16. Use your company letterhead on all forms you provide to the employee. Have your corporate attorney review your actions to assure your compliance of EPPA.
Over 25 years of experience in law enforcement,
interrogation and truth detection.
Martin Schermerhorn, certified polygraph examiner,
has advanced training and is current in the latest techniques, and technologies.
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