California & Michigan ID Redaction from Court Records

California & Michigan Records: Updates

On Wednesday, September 1, 2021, the California Supreme Court denied review in the matter of All of Us or None vs. Hamrick.

This denial means that the entire background screening industry will continue to see courts in California redacting date of birth from both their online and public access terminals. It is also very possible that court clerks will stop providing clerk assistance to verify full dates of birth – as we have recently seen in Los Angeles County. Criminal-records checks in California will continue to become increasingly difficult, and in some cases nearly impossible.

Please be advised that although the Michigan ID redaction order was pushed back to January 1, 2022, many courts are still redacting DOB. There is no consistency and the information we receive from Michigan counties changes daily. However, reports with no records should not be delayed.

Regarding reports with records, we have estimated that over half of the counties in Michigan have already redacted the DOB from records with no plans to reinstate the DOBs. Due to loss of revenue from court fees, some courts are reinstating DOB. Additionally, the number of counties continues to change. Missaukee county has stripped their terminals and is now considered to permanently redact DOBs.

Our adjudication team is working diligently to provide reports with records based on information available. However, if our team has no information available due to the DOB redaction, the reports will not reflect the unconfirmed record until further notice.
 
At this time, we cannot provide a list of counties that are unavailable because the list is constantly wavering between available and unavailable.  However, as we identify counties permanently offline, we will provide a list.

As a PBSA Accredited firm, we will continue to work with the PBSA Government Relations Date-of-Birth Redaction Task Force and the 2 potential alternative paths to resolution:
  1. Working with the California Judicial Council to modify the rule. 
  2. Creating a legislative campaign to introduce statutory changes that requires the Judicial Council to modify the rule.
Unfortunately, neither of the paths are guaranteed and both have a very long path to resolution. If PBSA is successful, it will likely be at least a year before we have a resolution.

In summary:
  • California reports continue to become increasingly difficult due to DOB redactions.
  • Missaukee county, Michigan has permanently redacted DOBs and we cannot obtain records.
  • As we identify counties in CA and MI permanently redacting DOBs, we will provide a list.
  • PBSA along with CDIA and dozens of other organizations are working to modify the rules and we are looking at a lengthy process.
We thank you for your patience as we work through these changes impacting the whole of the background screening industry.

Thank you,
 
S2Verify Team