BAY CITY, MI (WNEM) -
Jody Johnson is a single mother living in Bay City, and she said she’s having a hard time getting a job because when employers do a background check an identity theft charge shows up.
But she says she’s never committed a crime.
“The first time was about 4-years ago. I got pulled into my job and asked all these questions about have I ever been in trouble? Did I steal anyone’s identity? That’s when I first found out about it coming up on my background.”
She told TV5 the issue stems from her sister’s actions 5-years ago.
“The first time she got pulled over for drinking and driving all she did was give my name, date of birth, and my address; and the police officer had taken her to jail for drinking and driving and booked her under my name.”
More traffic violations followed, with more lies to police.
Jody said law enforcement eventually caught on and charged her sister with identity fraud.
“She got 90 days in jail and 3-years probation.”
After several rejections from potential employers, and multiple attempts at trying to correct her history, she called TV5 for help.
We contacted Gary Nitzkin with Credit Repair Lawyers of America who specialize in this type of thing. He said Jody is the victim of background checks run by dozens of companies compiling information gathered at one point from ‘public records’.
“How often is this information wrong? A lot of the time. Why? Because things like judgments, leans, don’t carry a social security number. It used to be if there was two people with a similar name in the same town, there was a 50-50 chance that their credit information would be mixed up,” Nitzkin told TV5.
He said that once a mistake is discovered it’s up to the victim to contact the specific background check company to correct the record.
And luckily for Jody, Nitzkin said he is happy to help her out.
“We would love to help Jody out, all she has to do is call us.”
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