I have a lookup on my page and the results are being displayed in a table with the person found, status and action 'view report'. You can only search one person at a time. Each person might have many reports. My question is, is this good practice to display the initially empty table? It looks odd to have my lookup and under it there's the table header with nothing below. Thanks
Yes, you can do it, however I would add an indication for the User that something is going to appear in the table.
This approach is called skeleton screens. You display a temporary content in the place where soon you are going to display the results.
This is used e.g. in Facebook feed, or on Medium and can be adapted to your case, I believe.
Here is an example:
Plus an article about it: https://www.sitepoint.com/how-to-speed-up-your-ux-with-skeleton-screens/