Client/Employer FAQs

Background Checks

Why should I perform Criminal Background Screening?
Hiring or placing the wrong candidate can cost you much more than just money. Valuable time is lost in the recruiting and interviewing process, and high turnover can negatively affect your company morale and reputation. Employee screening through Occuscreen can reduce the risk of negligent hiring lawsuits, workplace violence, theft, financial loss, sexual harassment, and much more.
How do I find information on the background check services you offer?
Please refer to our website for details related to the types of background checks we provide. If the search you are needing is not listed, or if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us at
How much will the background check cost?
Background checks can vary depending on what type of screening your company needs. Please email us at or give us a call for more information on pricing. We are happy to send you a Summary of Services which includes a description of available searches and standard pricing.
Does a National Criminal Database search provide a thorough nationwide search?
Despite the allure of the name, the National Criminal Database search (also called nationwide multi-jurisdiction search and many other names) is not recommended as a standalone search, as it is not comprehensive. Not all states and counties report information to the national criminal database, and there is no requirement by any authority to update it regularly or to remove information that is no longer relevant (such as dismissed cases.). This means you could be missing important information or receiving information that is outdated.

For a fully comprehensive search we always recommend using the National Criminal Database only as a supplement to county court records.

Does the applicant need to sign something before the background check?
Yes, The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) requires “a signed Disclosure and Authorization form from the applicant (prior to screening) which is a separate document from the application”. If you need a copy of a sample form, please email
How do I initiate a background check?
Once your account is set up, reports can be ordered through a variety of different methods, including:

  • Online data entry through the Occuscreen secure website
  • QuickApp process (electronic applicant Disclosure and Authorization form)

What is the turnaround time for my background check?
Employment screening reports are, on average, completed by our team within 3 business days (dependent on the searches ordered on the report). The report may go beyond this overall average. Reasons for delays include, but are not limited to:

  • County Criminal Court Searches – Clerk-assisted searches, archived records in certain counties, court closures or furloughs
  • Verifications – Not receiving return calls from Employers and/or schools being closed due to holidays.
  • Additional information might be needed in some instances to confirm records and/or confirm information uncovered on a report.

If your background check is still pending after three business days, and there is no ETA written in the client notes section of the report on our website, you can email, provide the file number and request an ETA. We will then email you an ETA as soon as it has been received.


What is involved in a drug test?
A specimen is provided (either urine, saliva or sometimes hair follicle) at a collection site, or sometimes through an onsite collection process, and sent to a certified laboratory for analysis. Any non-negative results are sent through a second analysis to confirm the result. Results are then provided directly to the employer.
How long will the drug test results take?
The drug testing results will take approximately 24 hours for negative results (from receipt at the lab), and an additional 24-72 hours for non-negative results. (Non-negative results are sent through an additional screen to confirm negative or positive results.)

If positive results are sent through the Medical Review process, an additional 24-72 hours will be required for the MRO to contact you to confirm the result as positive or negative (due to a valid medical explanation.)

What do I do if a drug screen is positive?
Occuscreen only reports the negative or positive results, we have no influence or participation in the response of the employer.
What is Medical Review (MRO)?
MRO is a process for reviewing and confirming a positive drug screen result. A trained Medical Review Officer will contact the applicant and give them the opportunity to provide a valid prescription. If prescriptions are submitted for review, the MRO will evaluate the drug type and dosage compared to the substance and levels which presented in the applicant’s drug screen. If everything matches, the result will be marked “Negative – valid medical explanation for positive” and we will submit a negative result back to the employer.

If the information does not match, the positive result will stand. Some states require a medical review for everydrug screen, positive and negative, or just for positive results. If you do not live in an MRO – required state, you have the option to send positive results through review. Standard turnaround time for an MRO is 24-72 hours. For additional information, go to our Medical Review Officer page.

What is oral fluid (saliva) drug testing?
Oral fluid (saliva) testing is an additional option for drug screening with a couple of unique benefits.

  • The specimen is collected onsite through a simple and dignified process and shipped via FedEx to the laboratory for analysis
  • Collections are witnessed
  • Although accuracy levels are similar to a urine test (when lab-analyzed), detection windows are shorter, even for marijuana.

For more information on oral fluid testing, visit our oral fluids testing page or contact us at

How do marijuana laws affect drug screening?
Marijuana is still federally illegal, so employers who are federal contractors must comply with federal law regarding drug testing. At this writing, if employers are not federal contractors, they still have the right (except in NV) to test prior to (and during) employment for marijuana. Currently, employers are allowed to test and make hiring decisions in conjunction with their drug testing policies.

The legal landscape surrounding medical and recreational marijuana is experiencing a lot of change at this time. For specific questions or updated information, please contact us at