Puerto Rico Enacts Restrictions on Use of Credit History in Employment Decisions

Puerto Rico has joined the growing list of states that preclude an employer or prospective employer from procuring an employees or applicants credit history and/or taking adverse employment action based on credit history.

On October 8, 2019, Puerto Rico Governor Wanda Vzquez Garced signed into law Act 150-2019 (the Act), which took effect immediately and prohibits employers (or potential employers) from:

  • denying or depriving an individual from receiving benefits or compensation, refusing to hire, refusing to promote, or discriminating against an employee or applicant based upon credit history;
  • verifying or investigating an employees or applicants credit history;
  • taking an adverse employment action based on an employees or applicants credit history.

Positions exempt from this law include

The Act sets forth a list of positions that are exempt (but still require written consent from the employee or applicant), including, but not limited to:

  • management positions;
  • positions that have access to trade secrets (as defined under Puerto Rico law), financial or personal information, or cash or other goods subject to misappropriation totaling at least $10,000; or
  • positions for which a credit report is required by federal law.