How do I validate a potential employer's credentials

So, today I am considering yet another possible avenue for employment. I have yet to meet the CEO, but I have driven past her place of business, and I kinda think they are a little, “low end.”

That is not terrifing, I know that every successful business started out somewhere, but it would be reassuring to know that my employer does not have any pending litigation against her. So, my question is, “Do I have the right to look into the background of a possible employer, and if so what can I do to verify the credentials of an employer?”

Of course you do. You need know that the company is not going to go belly up next week. You need to know the company culture. I would strongly urge you to check out the employer before saying yes.
A hint from my employemnt past.
If the employer wants you to start right away, and can’t wait for you to give notice at your present job, run for the hills.