Skip to Content


Legislative Changes Impact Screening

California SB 1262 Vetoed by the Governor


A 2021 court ruling led to courts in California to remove the DOB search field from online portals. As a result, researchers in CA now must seek court files or information from court clerks to confirm conviction records match the subjects of background reports. This restriction met head-on with court staffing shortages and budget furloughs. Some courts are not responding to search requests or limiting the number of searches that can be conducted in a day. As a result, the time it takes to complete searches in CA has increased significantly throughout the industry.  The delays particularly affect searches on common names and individuals that have a case in the court record, no matter if the case led to a conviction or not.

California SB 1262 Veto

Praesidium, along with everybody else in the background screening industry, were optimistic that we’d see some relief in California court searches with a bill that would restore identifying information to court indexes. The Professional Background Screening Association (PBSA) lobbied CA legislators on the bill, and it passed the CA Statehouse.  Unfortunately, at the end of September, the bill was vetoed by Governor Newsom.

Praesidium is working with our vendors to do whatever we can to return searches as quickly as possible in California, but we continue to expect delays.


Biden Pardons Individuals with Simple Possession of Marijuana

On October 6, 2022, President Biden issued a blanket pardon of individuals convicted in federal court of Simple Possession of Marijuana.  While this is no doubt major news and a major step in the relaxing of this country’s marijuana laws, the impact of this move is somewhat limited.  The White House estimates that approximately 6500 individuals are affected by the pardon. A vast majority of individuals with Simple Possession convictions are in state courts that are not affected by the pardon. Biden is encouraging state Governors to take similar action.

How could Biden’s action impact background checks?  There won’t be any noticeable impact.  It’s important to remember that thousands of people have convictions sealed, expunged or receive post-conviction dismissal every year and their offenses do not appear on background checks.  This action adds more people to that pool of individuals but will not significantly impact background screening.

With the constantly evolving state and federal laws related to marijuana, Praesidium encourages you to review your on-boarding and employee policies related to marijuana.