Will a misdemeanor make it hard to find a job?

Will a misdemeanor make it hard to find a job?

You’re facing a misdemeanor, and that means you’re going to have a blemish on your criminal record. Does it really matter? Will it affect your ability to get a job in the long run?

The truth is that around a third of all Americans get arrested for one reason or another before they turn 23, the National Institute of Justice reports, and misdemeanors then end up on their records in some cases. These offenses don’t look as bad as a felony, but they can still come up in job interviews or during applications, making your search just a little bit harder and interviewers more difficult to convince of your integrity.

If you have your misdemeanor expunged from your record, you don’t need to tell your employer that you’ve been convicted of a crime in the past. If your employer asks about your convictions, you will need to tell him or her. Whether or not that hurts your job prospects may come down to what the conviction is for. For instance, if you have a driving under the influence misdemeanor and are applying to drive to deliver food, you may not find it easy to get the job.

Is it better to disclose your conviction from the start? It can be. Honesty and integrity are good signs of character, and it may be that your employer appreciates that you’ve disclosed the mistakes of your past. If you can explain your conviction or what you’ve learned from it, you can turn a negative experience into a positive one, and that can look good at an interview.

Source: Chron, “Is a Misdemeanor Bad Enough to Not Be Able to Get a Job?,” Bronwyn Timmons, accessed July 30, 2015

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