Criminal History Background Checks
Effective July 1, 2008, criminal history background checks are required for all individuals performing personal assistance services. If you choose to self-direct your services you have the right to employ a worker regardless of the outcome of the background check.
If you are using the Consumer Employer model of service, you may choose to have a criminal background check completed on individuals hired before July 1, 2008.
If you are using an agency model of service, the home care/personal assistance agency is responsible for securing criminal history background checks for their employees. The agency must have a system in place to document that the criminal history background check was conducted.
If you are using the Consumer Employer model of service, the Fiscal/Employer Agency is responsible for securing criminal history background checks for prospective support workers. In addition, the F/EA must have a system in place to 1) document that the criminal history background check was conducted, and 2) the individual’s decision to employ a support worker with a criminal record and their acceptance of responsibility for their decision.
Criminal history clearances are obtained from the Pennsylvania State Police within 30 work days from the date that the employee/provider initiates services to the participant. The Pennsylvania State Police access the Pennsylvania Crime Information Center (PCIC) and the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) for this information. In the interim of securing the written results of the criminal history, the agency will obtain a written certification from the employee which confirms that either the employee has never been convicted of a felony or discloses prior convictions.
The employee attests to understanding that if the certification is contradicted by the criminal clearance results, the employee may face immediate dismissal from employment in the waiver program. The decision to dismiss an employee based on criminal background check results rests solely with the employer of record.
Bureau of Individual Supports
Phone: (717) 787-8091