Employers should scrap policies that bar hiring people with criminal records, and should avoid using credit reports to screen job candidates, employment-law attorneys told a business group Tuesday.

Considering a prospective employee’s arrest or criminal record, or inquiring about their credit status, before even offering them a job, are practices that can put a company at risk of violating federal law, said Jeffrey Burstein, senior trial lawyer for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in Newark, and Catherine Wells, head of the employment law department at Wolff Samson in West Orange. Burstein and Wells were speakers at a roundtable, held at the Hilton&nbspHasbrouck Heights about making employment decisions under Title VII, which forbids discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex and national origin.