Criminal Background/Motor Vehicle Records (MVR) Check Criteria As of April 1, 2013

Rochester Institute of Technology is committed to providing a safe and secure campus for its students, staff, faculty, and visitors, and to protecting the material resources of the College. As part of our strategy to achieve this goal and to ensure that the university has taken reasonable care in selecting its new employees.

The RIT Criminal Background/MVR check process was implemented in November 2004, and is updated from time to time to reflect current hiring/employment practices and changes in the law.   

RIT does not run credit reports as a part of the background check process.

RIT does not use social media as part of the background check process.


The hiring manager must receive notification that the background check has been cleared prior to the start of the assignment.  

A background check/MVR report is valid for one year from the date it was last run. If there is a break in an employee’s service, the returning employee is required to have another background check run.


Should the background check reveal negative results that could potentially be grounds for denying employment, the Manager of Staff Recruitment will notify both the candidate and the department/hiring manager. The hiring manager/department will be notified that the individual is not clear for hire at this time. Only the candidate is given the actual results of the background check.

If the candidate believes that the information contained in the criminal background check is inaccurate and wishes to contest the validity of the information, the department, will be required to hold the position open for up to 60 days as required by FCRA (Federal Credit Reporting Act), the federal act which oversees the background check process. The staff recruitment assistant will communicate directly with the department within 7 days of the receipt of the background check report.

While the results of the criminal background check are being contested, the department cannot automatically hire their second choice. During this time, the department is permitted to fill the position on a temporary basis if circumstances require. The temp employee must be advised in writing that the assignment is temporary, that it is for no more than 60 days, and that the temporary assignment is subject to termination with or without notice before the expiration of the 60 days.


The following individuals are subject to criminal background check and/or MVR check:

  • President’s Office (Administrative Faculty and Staff)
  • Provost’s Office(including Deans, Administrative Faculty, Adjunct Faculty and staff
  • ALL regular full time, extended part-time and part-time staff for all colleges and divisions throughout the university
  • RIT Temporary staff employees(including RIT students who transfer to an RIT Temp position) for all colleges and universities
  • Institute Audit Compliance and Advisement-staff, co-op and student employees
  • Information Security-staff, co-op and student employees
  • Student Affairs Division-including
    • All new hires(staff) and individuals(staff) who transfer to the division
    • Student Affairs Adjunct Faculty-new & returning(annual background check)
    • Advisors(faculty* & staff)  to all Institute clubs and organizations with student membership-annual background check
    • VOLUNTEERS for Student  Affairs, student organizations and students needing assistance- All volunteers(faculty**-staff-student-external hire)in any capacity associated within the Student Affairs Division, any Student Organization including athletic teams and all student clubs and organizations, and any volunteers assisting students with special needs
  • Dining Services-Student Managers/Bartenders-as designated in the job description on file with Student Employment
  • Volunteers for programs involving minors (faculty**-staff-students)
  • Grant associated/Externally Funded projects- positions-regular RIT employees(faculty**,  staff), and students working on grants which require background checks as a condition of the grant/project
  • K-12 Step Academy Instructors (faculty**-staff-RIT temporary-student employee)
  • Margaret’s House- additional verification for positions within their area, which are managed by the respective departments.(staff-RIT temporary)
  • Public Safety- additional requirements (such as drug testing and physical) and verification of required certifications for positions within their area, are managed by the respective departments.(staff)
  • University Writing Program Adjunct Faculty
  • RIT staff employees who terminate employment, are eligible for re-hire, and re-hired  


 Within affected organizations/positions, some groups/classifications are excluded.

  • RIT-payroll staff temporary employees who are working retirees
  • RIT-payroll staff temporary employees who are minors hired as seasonal workers
  • Student employees/co-op students other than those explicitly included as stated above  
  • Independent Contractors
  • International/Foreign National hires
  • External vendors/contractors for on premises work/events
  • RIT current staff employees who transfer to a position which requires an MVR check but are already enrolled in NY LENS program
  • Volunteers(faculty**-staff-students) for the following on campus events (including operation of golf carts)
    • Imagine Festival
    • Colleges and Careers
    • Commencement
    • Brick City Homecoming
    • New Student Orientation/Move-In (exception-MVR check only-criminal background check still required)


  • All non-payroll AGENCY TEMPORARY EMPLOYEES working on assignment at RIT are required to undergo the same scope of background checks as is required for RIT employees. If an agency temporary employee is required to operate an RIT vehicle as conditions of their assignment, the temporary agency will run the MVR check and report the results to the of their eligibility to operate a motor vehicle to their supervisor.  The agency will use the same criteria to clear an individual as RIT. The agency will be responsible for Adverse Action compliance if necessary.


The following individuals are required to complete an MVR background check prior to the start of their employment/assignment for any position that lists driving as an essential function of the job. The MVR check must be run and cleared prior to the start of the individual’s assignment.

  • New staff hires
  • Internal staff transfer to a position that requires driving as an essential function of the job
  • Adjunct faculty
  • Student Employees operating RIT vehicles (as defined by the hiring supervisor/manager)
  • Current RIT regular employees(faculty or staff) who transfer to a position that requires an MVR check for operating RIT vehicles (as identified by the hiring department)
  • Out of State License- (faculty**-staff-student) the individual must complete the Criminal Background check form  (
  • Out of State License-not in the Lexis Nexis network-if an individual’s driver’s license is from a state that Lexis Nexis does not access-the individual will secure a copy of their driving record from that state, fill out the background check authorization form, and the hiring manager will forward the form and driving record the Staff Recruitment Assistant for review, and either clear or deny operation of vehicles. 

Please note-International Students are not permitted to operate any RIT vehicles as there is no ability to verify the validity of a driver’s license record prior to coming to RIT/USA. An International Driving Permit is not a driver’s license. The permit only verifies that the individual holds a valid driver’s license in their home country

NYS LENS (License Event Notification Service) Program

RIT Employees (faculty**-staff-students) who do any of the following must also be entered into the NYS LENS Program by completing the NY LENS background check form ( to be eligible to drive vehicles for RIT business purposes(unless listed above in exceptions) :

  • Employees who either regularly or intermittently drive any RIT vehicles.  This includes, but is not limited to, automobiles, trucks, Gators and golf carts.
  • Employees who regularly drive their personal vehicles for RIT business purposes.
  • Employees who regularly rent vehicles while traveling for RIT business purposes.

Only employees with NYS driver’s licenses can be entered into LENS. 

Employees with driver’s licenses from other states will be subject to annual MVR checks. The Vehicle and Driver Safety Procedures for RIT can be found in their entirety at


RIT requires any program involving minors throughout the year to follow New York State guidelines. All related information and guidelines can be found at:



The decision to deny employment to an individual because of a record of criminal or MVR conviction(s) or to hire an individual with a record of criminal or MVR conviction(s) is made by the Assistant Vice President of Human Resources after considering recommendations made in a case review process.  The general and overarching conditions guide the decision-making are:

  • There is a direct relationship of the conviction to the job responsibilities.
  • Failure to disclose criminal conviction(s) on the RIT application for employment
  • Hiring the individual is considered an unreasonable risk to the students, faculty, staff, and guests, and/or the assets of the university
  • The time which has elapsed since the occurrence of the criminal conviction
  • The age of the individual at the time of the occurrence of the criminal conviction
  • The seriousness of the offense 

The full decision making process is documented and available for review by contacting Human Resources at 585-475-6261, or by going to


Any regular RIT regular faculty/staff employee(part time or full time), including adjuncts, can review the process documentation on file with Human Resources by contacting the staff recruiting assistant at 585-475-6261 and setting up a time to review and ask questions with regards to the process. The full confidential process document can also be found at


All records are required to be retained in Human Resources for a period of 6 years after the end of an individual’s employment, in accordance with RIT’s Records Retention Policy (C22.0).