San Francisco

Brown Signs Bill Requiring Background Checks on Uber, Lyft Drivers

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Scott Budman/File

California will require Uber and Lyft to conduct background checks on all drivers and lay off certain criminals beginning in 2017.

Gov. Jerry Brown announced Wednesday that he signed legislation aiming to protect people who use ride-hailing services.

Beginning Jan. 1, transportation networks cannot employ drivers who are registered sex offenders, violent felons or terrorists. AB1289 will also ban people convicted in the last seven years of assault, domestic violence or driving under the influence.

Companies could be fined up to $5,000 per banned driver.

Uber and Lyft terms and conditions require riders to agree that the companies aren't liable for their safety.

Prosecutors have identified drivers in Los Angeles and San Francisco convicted of murder, sexual assault and other offenses that will make them ineligible under the new law.

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