Reference and background inquiries allow an employer to verify information provided by the applicant. Companies who make proper and judicious use of the information gathered as a result of a thorough background investigation typically reduce exposure to employee fraud, theft, embezzlement, turnover, unqualified employees, negligent hiring claims and violence in the workplace.The following are the most important aspects that makeup a background investigation. Additionally, how the information can be used to significantly reduce employee difficulties and employment litigation is also discussed:EMPLOYER REFERENCES-Checking past employers is used primarily to verify information provided by the applicant on resumes and applications such as dates of employment, job title, compensation, reasons for separation, and re-hire status. With even a small amount of information provided by a past or current employer, you may be able to gauge an applicant’s skill, ability and honesty or perhaps areas such as attendance problems, violent behavior, and manageability.· Required element in the defense of negligent hiring claims (regardless of whether or not the reference shares information).EDUCATION VERIFICATION-An important integrity check. Surveys suggest that as many as 1 in 3 resumes and applications contain inaccurate education assertions and that more than 500,000 Americans have bought their academic degrees. This area contains the second highest rate of inaccuracy, behind salary. This check verifies education commiserate with position requirements.· This is one of the easiest checks to pursue.· This may include industry specific certifications and other non-degree-oriented training.PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL REFERENCES-Similar to screening employer references and great for gaining an insight into some personality traits of the applicant.· Addresses of friends and family that are in other states, or are otherwise a great distance away, may also indicate that the candidate had lived in that area. This is important regarding criminal record checks.DEPARTMENT OF MOTOR VEHICLE REPORTS-May verify the type, status, validity, and restrictions of the applicant’s driver’s license. Can also be used to verify information provided by the candidate such as current address, date of birth and license endorsements.· Essential if the applicant will drive on company time or use company vehicles.· May indicate a history of substance abuse.· Required element in the defense of negligent hiring claims.SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER TRACE-A specialized report that may indicate a social security number’s validity or uncover aliases and other people using the same number. Generally includes a candidate’s current and previously reported addresses for comparison to an application.· Previous addresses should be used in the criminal history check.· Required element in defense of negligent hiring claims.CRIMINAL BACKGROUND CHECKS-Make a thorough criminal background check. It is not uncommon for employers to be sued for an employee’s illegal acts. Do not check arrest histories, only records of criminal convictions. Compare to application to determine a candidate’s honesty. You should not immediately disqualify a candidate for convictions, unless they are not included on the application. Convictions must recent and job related (i.e. driver applicant with a DWI conviction or a retail candidate convicted of shoplifting or theft).The criminal background check is essential in considering a candidate’s character, integrity, history of violent behavior, and suitability for the job. It is best to visit the appropriate county’s Clerk of Court criminal records office in person but you can also reach them by phone, fax, computer or mail.· Past performance is indicative of future results.· Required element in the defense of negligent hiring claims.· If you should find information that causes you not to hire an individual, keep a copy for your records.PRE-EMPLOYMENT CREDIT CHECK-Also called a PEER report by credit reporting bureaus. This report is similar to a standard consumer credit report. It may contain secured and unsecured loan, revolving credit (credit card) and other debt information, as well as payment history. It may include information from public record sources such as judgments, liens, and bankruptcies.· Used to gauge a candidate’s fiscal responsibility and financial pressures.· May also include information from the less expensive Social Security Trace.FEDERAL AND STATE LICENSE VERIFICATION-Used when an applicant must have a license for the job. Verifies the validity, type and status of required licensing.· Complaints and administrative actions regarding licensed individuals may also be available.· Required element in the defense of negligent hiring claims.HONESTY, ATTITUDE AND PERSONALITY TESTING-Although not a background or reference investigation, these tests have a definite place in the pre-hire process. These surveys measure a candidate’s attitude regarding honesty, ethics, substance abuse, reliability, work and supervisors.· These test typically cost between $6-$10 per candidate.· Over 45% of Fortune 100 Companies use profile testing at some level in their organization.DRUG SCREENING-Again, tests for the use of illicit drug use also have a definite place in the pre-hire process. Many studies have linked drug use in the workplace to higher than average losses. According to one such study, the average theft incident per employee with a substance addiction is 6.3 times higher than to the average theft incident committed by a non-addicted employee. OSHA has recently re-released information indicating that employees in companies with drug screening programs are 4 times less likely to have job related accidents, equating to greater productivity and profits.· Required element in the defense of negligent hiring claims (especially when employees operate machinery, drive on company time or use company vehicles).Keep in mind, the results from these reports must be compared against provided information in order to measure an applicant’s honesty. Hiring a dishonest candidate is never a good decision.There are many more sources for background and reference investigations than have been included here; a licensed private investigation agency specializing in pre-employment investigations may be able to help you identify and obtain any additional needs.As in all aspects of the hiring process, federal and state laws may govern how you use or share information obtained while conducting these and other checks; always maintain documentation generated as a result of these reports.Furthermore, all positions do not require every check or screening process included; for example, a waiter’s position in a restaurant may not warrant the expense of a credit check, motor vehicle report or psychological profile testing.Some Important Considerations:· All employers should seriously consider a comprehensive drug-screening program.· Any time a state or federal license is required for the position, a license verification check must be completed.· Background investigations for jobs requiring access to cash, financial records, and valuable merchandise (jewelry, weapons, electronics, etc.) should include a pre-employment credit check, with check-ups performed semi-annually.· Department of Motor Vehicle Records should be checked semi-annually.· Criminal Background checks should be completed once a year.· Additional investigation components should be verified when an employee is promoted.There are many other checks and resources available to the public that can be used to uncover possible sources of fraud, theft, and dishonesty. The components listed above are the most common elements of a background investigation and are not meant to be an exhaustive study. The services of a competent investigations company should be sought to discuss additional options.
An Intellectual Property Assignment and License Agreement is a unique agreement whereby one party, the assignor, transfers to another party, the assignee, rights to their intellectual property, be it in a copyright, trademark, or patent, in exchange for valuable consideration, and in exchange for the assignee assigning back to the assignor a license to use the intellectual property. Thus, in such an arrangement, ownership to the intellectual property rights has been transferred, but the assigning party is still able to use the copyright, trademark, or patent, subject to the terms and conditions of the agreement. Unless stated otherwise, the rights, for the duration of the license at least, are thus non-exclusive, as both parties have the right to use property.
Because the arrangement is so unique, a drafter of an IP Assignment and License Agreement must be sure to carefully state the rights and obligations of each party. The following are the most important areas to address:
1. Assignment – The agreement must first address the parameters of the assignment. This generally involves a full and irrevocable transfer, assign, conveying, and delivering of all proprietary ownership and all other right, title, and interest in and to the property. The assignee should also require further assurances that the assignor will execute all documents and do all other things deemed necessary to perfect, establish, protect, prosecute, defend, and enforce assignee’s right to the property, which could include things like filing certain documents with the Federal Government.
2. Compensation – This section must address what the assignee is giving up in exchange for the intellectual property rights. It could be a cash payment, a stock payment, a mixture of both, or some other form of payment altogether. If it is an agreement with a subsidiary company, there may not be any consideration at all. Generally though, the purchase price is substantial for valuable intellectual property rights, as it is not unusual to see hundreds of thousands, if not millions, shares of stock in play.
3. Rights – The actual rights being assigned by Assignor to Assignee must be described here. Intellectual Property rights fall into the categories of copyrights, trademarks, or patents. Many times a company will have a trademark to a name and as well as a patent to that service.
4. License to Assignor – Here the terms of the “license back” to the Assignor should be addressed. For example, this paragraph could state: “In further consideration for the assignment, the assignee will grant to Assignor a worldwide, exclusive, royalty-free right and license for the purposes of making, using, selling, offering for sale, and importing products.” The key is to outline the scope of the license, whether it is exclusive or non-exclusive, what territory it covers, and whether there are any limitations on the Assignor’s right to use the intellectual property. The agreement must also state the term, i.e. length, of the license.
5. General Provisions – The agreement should address the rules governing the Assignor/Licensee’s right to sublicense the property or obligation to refrain from sublicensing the property. The agreement should also address issues such as assignment, waiver, and governing law.
These are the most important provisions involved in an Intellectual Property Assignment and License Agreement. For further information, or to read and download actual Intellectual Property Agreements, please see the Agreements section of this website.
How can you make your home more efficient? Efficiency by definition is creating a desired effect while using or wasting the least amount of resources. When we think of home efficiency, we typically think of an energy efficient home such that we want the energy used in our home to cost the least. There are many different types of efficiencies in our home depending on the desired effect and resources used.
Energy efficiency: using the least amount of energy from outside our home given the amount of energy you use inside. Using the least amount of energy doesn’t always translate into the least cost of energy.
Financial efficiency: getting the most tangible benefit for the least expense
Pollution efficiency: wasting the least amount of material
Labor efficiency: getting the most out of your own labor so that you can relax more
Each of these efficiencies can contradict one another and there will usually be trade offs between each one depending on your overall goals for your home and lifestyle. If you simply want to reduce the money that you spend on your home and home energy, your goal would be financial efficiency. If you want to reduce your footprint on the planet and have more of a green or environmental goal, then energy efficiency and pollution efficiency would be your top priorities. Reducing your overall energy use is energy conservation which shouldn’t be confused with energy efficiency. Environmentalists typically call for saving energy or conserving energy so that we will have less of an impact on the world. On the other hand, labor efficiency is for those who want to worry the least and spend the least amount of time working in their home.
Energy efficiency is the ratio of productive work generated in a process to the total amount of energy used. An incandescent light bulb produces light and heat from electricity. The light efficiency is only 10% meaning that only 10% of the input electricity produces light, which is highly inefficient. If the bulb is indoors in the summer, the heat given off by the bulb will heat the room and may cause the air conditioning to run more which would be counter productive and reduce the bulb’s efficiency even more. However, if the bulbs are used in the winter, then the home heating system can run less and the bulbs’ efficiency is increased possibly up to 100%. For outdoor bulbs, the heat from the bulbs is irrelevant and the efficiency stays at 10%.
Financial Efficiency or cost savings is the amount of money saved by installing a device compared to the device cost. The amount of time required to get cost savings can vary. Replacing incandescent bulbs with fluorescent will show cost savings sooner than installing a complete solar panel system.
Pollution efficiency is the amount of productive work from a process compared to the amount of wasted material that must be discarded. Solar panels, while in use, are pollution free, but the manufacturing process of solar panels generates waste. The amount of desired pollution efficiency depends more on your values and the perceived cost to the environment of the pollution. Pollution efficiency often comes with a trade off with financial efficiency with many environmentalists willing to bear a greater cost for reducing pollution.
Labor efficiency is the amount of productive work from a device compared to the human labor needed to install and maintain it. For example a gas or electric stove requires much less effort to use compared to a wood burning stove since you only have to turn on an electric or gas stove to get heat.
When comparing the different efficiencies of different devices keep in mind that efficiencies can vary over time and be aware of the expected lifetime of each device. For example, if a solar panel system stops working before cost savings are achieved, then the system would be financially inefficient.
Travel planning has been gradually shifting from the domain of experts to the domain of an ever-growing amount of travelers’ experiences, and it will continue to grow in that respect in the years to come.
With the advent of the Internet, most travel bookings and travel research have moved into the online space. Guidebooks are excellent resources on the road, but they quickly become outdated when the Internet is constantly updated with newer and more accurate information. User-generated sites such as wikitravel.org are updated by locals and travelers as soon as new restaurants, hotels, and bars open, and these people also are able to “vote” with the information they put online. Other booking sites now rely on the reviews of other travelers, and services like Twitter allow instant broadcasts of what travelers’ are experiencing. With all of these resources available, online travel planning is the best method. Here are some of the best sites to use:
o Wikitravel.org is one of the best travel sites on the web. Modeled after Wikipedia.org and easily searchable by location, and offers the most up to date information available.
o The Thorn Tree travel forums moderated by Lonely Planet are legendary. Tens of thousands of travelers that have almost certainly seen and done whatever trip you are planning are more than happy to lend a helping hand.
o Kayak.com is an airfare search aggregator, covering most of the world’s major airlines. It will find the best prices based on your travel preferences, then take you to the site of the carrier to easily book your flight.
o Hostelworld.com is the king of cheap accommodations. With over 10,000 network hostels, the website has budget locations all over the planet, all searchable and ready to book online.
o Couchsurfing.org is a fantastic website both for connecting with locals while traveling and securing free accommodation. The website allows people to host travelers all over the world for free, and they often serve as tour guides and the perfect local guidebook for a place.
A lot of the above websites have the common factor of user-generated content. This is increasingly becoming the determining factor for travelers. The reasoning is that most magazine and guidebook reviews are paid, so reviews posted by other travelers are inherently more trustworthy. Taking a look at a guidebook published 6 months ago on a city like Buenos Aires and comparing it to the Wikitravel.org page is like night and day. The old methods of travel planning have been replaced by the immediacy of the Internet and the amassed knowledge of other travelers. As more and more people gain Internet access, even remote places will have locals that can dispel myths and misconceptions about travel in their hometowns and areas.
This spread of information will make travel planning easier and easier, and also more accurate. I have planned all of my trips abroad using solely the Internet, and it is by far the most efficient method.
So you are thinking of getting some extra money to make some urgent home repairs, the porch door needs replacing, along with a new hot water system. Unfortunately you do not have the money in the bank, but neither do you have a secure porch door or any constant hot water.
Have you considered personal loans? A lot of people take out personal loans for this type of repair. Car repairs and even holidays are used by people with their newly acquired finances. Most people have heard that a poor credit score is not a good thing (However even those that have a poor financial history can still get loans). But how do you make a good rating?
One of thing major pieces of advice from experts, before you apply for finance it is best to get a credit report completed from a reputable source. This will give you an idea of the chance of getting your application approved. In the United States of America there are three levels of credit rating, basically the higher it is the better it is.
An excellent rating is above 760, a good rating would be between 700 and 759 and a poor rating would be between 640 to 699. if you are at the top end, 760 and above then there is no point in making your rating any better. However with other ratings it is worth trying to improve as it will help your chances of succeeding in the application.
There does seem to be a bit of a chicken and egg situation sometimes, you need finance but have a poor score,but to improve you need a lender to give you a chance. Well, luckily there are things that you and your family if you have one, can do to improve your rating.
Having a poor rating does not mean you have to be stuck with it, starting to pay the bills on time instead of late or not at all will start to get you on the right path. Some lenders will still give applicants loans even with a low score, but the total given will be lower than usually and the percentage rate will be considerably higher. So you will pay more over the period of the finance.
Families can help too. If a member of your family has a good rating then some credit card companies can add you to that family members credit card as an authorized user, this will help with any poor credit score. Also having a family member with a good rating co-sign the loan could help you get what you need.
Finding the correct lender for your score is a good way to make sure that you are getting what you deserve, if you have a high score you deserve some of the best deals on the market. Instead of going to your bank or card company you can go online and search for a matching company. Companies like this are a good place go to make sure you achieve the best deal.
What are a matching company and what do they do? You enter your details on their online program and your information will be fed to several of their approved lenders, in turn the lenders will then return to the matching company with a list of loans that they are able to offer.
Once the offers come back it is then up to the applicant to choose one and complete all the necessary paperwork. A check will then be received within a matter of days and your new boiler and door fitted soon after.
Everyone is busy. Busy in shopping online and in the malls. Popular online portals are breaking and making new sale records! All thanks to the convenience and the availability of easy payment options and funds!
Here are few of the factors that are making online businesses a success
Credit Cards: A credit card is plastic money. It is one of the easiest form in which a person gets a personal loan.
All online portals as well as retailers in malls accept credit cards issued by various banks.
Online payment becomes very simple and safe, thanks to the one time passwords generated for such transactions.
A PIN is sufficient for shopping using a credit card at any retail store.
Personal loans for shopping: When we apply for a personal loan, we don’t have to provide the financier with the details of what we want the loan for.
Thus these days’ personal loans are being used to finance shopping.
They can also be used as wedding loans, vacation loans and educational loans.
Payment Processing: As far as payment processing is concerned, the following factors matter to both the consumer and the online retailer.
Uncomplicated manoeuvring on website: It is important for the payment process to be step-by-step and easy to understand. Most websites work on this section very carefully and thus the online shopping experience is satisfactory.
Processing Costs: Processing costs matter to the retailers. More the processing fees they have to pay to providers of payment gateways like Visa, the lesser are their margins. So to have an effective business the processing costs need to be low.
Number of payment options: Multiple payment options should be available for the customer to make payment. This makes the shopping a convenient proposition.
Time taken to process transactions: Processing time not only tests your patience but sometimes also the strength of your internet connection!
Cash on Delivery: This is also known as “collection on delivery.” This is a very popular mode of making payments for shopping in the developing world.
It enhances impulse purchases.
A credit card is not an essential possession for the buyer.
The buyer can check the quality of the product and then pay
So this festive season, do not hesitate to shop and to gift! The availability of funds for shopping is not difficult anymore. Also the convenience of online shopping has brought various retailers to our doorstep. So let us shop all the way!
An easy way of shopping is using a credit card. It forms an integral part of most people’s financial planning. When used in the right manner, it helps reduce financial liability and optimizes financial resources.
While the rise of online lending in itself makes it more convenient for people to apply for finance, is this development a good thing for those who are already struggling? There are companies out there who charge expensive annual percentage rates (APRs), leaving many people in more trouble than when they first started.
But it doesn’t have to be this way. Over the last few years, online lending has earned itself a bad reputation. The internet leaves many people vulnerable to fraud, so you should always exercise caution when inputting your financial details. The best way to make sure your information remains safe is to find a secure, reliable lending platform.
There is an unfair irony attached to lending today. Those with bad credit are often led to believe they have no financial options if they have made mistakes in the past, often making their situations seem more desperate than they actually are. This can result in people making bad decisions and can lead to borrowing through unstable sources.
Meanwhile, any lenders that do accept you with bad credit will charge extortionate interest rates because of your history, making it more difficult for you to meet your monthly repayment obligations – thus worsening your situation. This is a trap that many people fall into, and it gives online installment lenders a bad name.
However, this doesn’t need to be the case. If you can find yourself a reliable lending platform, you will be connected to a secure network of trustworthy lenders who can offer sensible solutions to your borrowing needs. Many of these lenders will assess your application, even if your credit file isn’t perfect or your income is lower than average.
Instead of (or in some cases, as well as) running credit checks, these lenders will take other factors into consideration, including your income and employment circumstances, and how long you have lived at your current address. They may even ask for references they can contact who will vouch for your character personally.
Even those who receive benefits as a form of income will be able to apply, giving everyone a fair and carefully considered chance of borrowing money. In these cases, applicants won’t be accepted for higher loans than they can afford to pay back, and interest rates will be low, meaning there is a better chance of managing repayments.
If you have poor credit and need to borrow money, consider a personal installment loan, but make sure the APR is advertised between 5.99% and 35.99%. There should also be a number of options in terms of flexible repayment, offering you the chance to pay the money back anywhere between six months and six years, depending on what you can afford to pay per month.
Small, carefully considered personal loans could actually help you build a financial profile making you eligible for better future borrowing. As long as the lender is responsible, and offers reasonable interest rates, online lending platforms can actually give people with more opportunities than many other lenders in terms of improving their situation.
With this in mind, personal loans can be beneficial to those hoping to improve their credit score, but only if some caution is exercised by both parties, and you only apply to borrow an amount you can afford to pay back.
Don’t you wish personal finance were a mandatory course in college? Unfortunately, too many of us learn by mistake. When you need a personal loan and are rejected, you might be baffled as to what went wrong- and how to fix it. Here are some clues.
No credit is a situation where you have never used credit and therefore have no credit history for the bank to review. They have no way of making an educated decision on whether or not you will pay back a personal loan based on your credit history. No credit is worse than bad credit. Qualifying for and making regular payments on these types of introductory forms of credit can overcome a “no credit” score:
· Student Loans
· Secured credit card (includes a down payment amount)
· Being added to a parent’s or spouses good credit: card, car loan, etc.
Low credit takes on several forms. If you’re using more than 30% of your allowable debt, it can negatively impact your score. Too many inquiries from shopping around for loans will also hit you hard. Lapses in payment, defaults, or bankruptcies are giant red flags and can take a long time to rebuild from.
Other things that lenders may look at are whether or not you have sizeable assets should you default on the loan. They also check to see if your debts are diversified or if you are only carrying one type of debt.
Proof of income is generally required when applying for a personal loan. If you are unemployed or underemployed, it can work against you in the loan approval process. Lenders may also require a work history to see how long you have been with your current employer, and to determine if you typically have job stability. Frequent job loss or change will tell a creditor that your payments may not be reliable.
PURPOSE OF THE LOAN
Believe it or not, your application can be rejected due to your proposed purpose for the loan. Financial institutions have the right to set up the parameters surrounding their disbursements and can accept or reject your application based on what you want to use the money for.
If you’ve defaulted on debt before, your name may be put on a list of whom not to loan to,’ also known as a “Blacklist.” This will follow you around for a long time and is difficult to erase. If you do resolve the debt issues, get documents to prove the resolution.
When it comes to a personal loan, you have to first learn to use it responsibly. Because if you miss a repayment, your credit score will be impacted adversely. And remember, that a credit score is an indicator of how well you manage your personal finances. Also, it plays a defining role when you apply for any kind of loan – secured and unsecured. It is suggested to apply for a loan slightly larger than what is needed so that you will be assured to have enough money to pay all bills necessary and still have some money left over to ensure that your bank account stays current.
A credit score can be defined as a number which reflects the financial situation of a person. If the person is well-off when it comes to financial matters, then he or she is said to have a high credit score. On the other hand, if a person is the exact opposite of this, then they possess a low credit score. There are a lot of factors that are considered by financial institutions for the purpose of evaluating a person’s credit score – usually, the credit scores of people vary from 300 to about 850.
A personal loan is a type of loan that is given by digital lenders, banks and credit unions to aid you in your plans, be it starting a small business, or making a big purchase. Personal loans tend to have an interest rate(s) lower than the credit cards; however, they can also be put to use for combining several credit card debts together into one monthly lower-cost payment.
Now, your credit score is built by keeping in mind various parameters from your credit reports. These reports serve the purpose of trailing your history of utilization of the credit across the duration of seven years. These credit reports are comprised of information, including how much credit you have utilized to date, the type of credit in your possession, the age of one’s credit accounts, whether one has put in for bankruptcy or liens filed against them, actions of debt collections taken against them, one’s total open lines of credit as well as recent inquiries for hard credit.
Like any other type of credit, personal loans are very capable of affecting your credit score. This can be done through the process of applying and withdrawing a personal loan. If you are curious as to how personal loans can end up affecting your credit, then read on to find out more about the context. There are many ways in which your credit can be affected by personal loans and some of them are listed below:
The ratio of your debt-to-income and loan
Debt-to-income ratio is considered to be the measure of your amount of income that you spend on the debt repayments. In the case of lenders, the amount of income that you receive is said to be one of the major factors proving that you are able to repay your loan.
Some of the lenders have come up with their own debt-to-income ratio so that their proprietary credit scores may make use of it in the form of a credit consideration. Do not fall into the kind of mindset that possessing a high amount of a loan would hurt your credit. The most damage it can do is raise the ratio of your debt-to-income so that you won’t be able to apply for loans anymore without it getting rejected or denied.
Paying loans on time will make credit scores soar
The moment your loan is approved, you have to make sure that you settle the payments of each month on time and in full. Delay in repayment may significantly impact the state of your credit score. However, on the other hand, if you make the payments on time every month, then your credit score will soar high, leading to an overall good score. This will not only make your name to the preferred borrower’s list, but it will prove to be beneficial for you in the long run.
Since your payment history is comprised of almost 35% of your credit score, paying loans on time is essential in cases like these so that your credit score can maintain a positive status.
Variety is built into your credit type
There are about five factors that are responsible for determining your credit score. These are composed of the payment history, the length of the credit history, the utilization ratio of the credit, the credit mix and new inquiries of the credit in accordance with FICO®.
The credit mix only accounts for about 35% of your total credit score, whereas when it comes to a personal loan you can have a varying mix of the credit types. This mix of all types of credit is viewed at a high level of approval by the creditors and lenders.
Origination fee charged by loans
Most of the lenders end up charging you an origination fee. This fee cannot be avoided at any cost and is instantly taken off from the amount of the loan payment. The amount of origination fees depends upon the amount of the loan you are about to borrow. Late payments can lead to an overdraft of fees and late expenses. Therefore, make sure that you pay complete repayment for each month before the deadline.
Avoiding penalties when it comes to payments
Some of the credit lenders tend to charge an additional fee if you end up paying your part of the loan earlier than the agreed date. This is because they are looking for moderate amounts of interest on your loan. Now, seeing that you have paid off your part of the loan before time, they will miss out on that interest that they could have possibly made if you had not cleared the debt soon enough before the deadline.