Legislative Update – Consent Based Social Security Number Verification System to Accept Electronic Signatures.

On Thursday, May 24, President Trump signed into law a bi-partisan bill that enacts certain reforms to Dodd-Frank and includes a significant win for the background screening profession. A provision included in the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (S. 2155) will modernize the Social Security Administration (SSA) by directing the Consent Based Social Security Number Verification (CBSV) system to accept electronic signatures as consumer consent for financial institutions or service providers trying to verify customer ID.

The provision was authored by a bi-partisan group of Senators including: Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Senator Tim Scott (R-SC), Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO) and Senator Gary Peters (D-MI). Accepting electronic signatures will allow the federal government to keep up with the speed of technological advancements, making the CBSV more efficient, and thereby a more effective tool in combatting identity fraud. Electronic consent will also promote the usage of the CBSV system, given that there are currently many employers who want to perform CBSVs, but choose not to due to the inconvenience of the SSA-89 wet signature form.

While the provision went into effect upon enactment, SSA must implement technological changes in order to process requests based upon electronic-signature.

This information is provided by JDP for informational purposes only and should not be considered legal advice. JDP is not legal counsel and cannot provide legal advice. Anyone reading this content should work with counsel to determine how legislative updates affect their employment screening program.

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