Obtaining Employment When You Have A Criminal Record
A criminal conviction will result in many penalties, including perhaps jail time and high fines. Unfortunately, the consequences will not end there. Even after you have paid your debt to society and are ready to make a fresh start, employers may not be so willing. A criminal conviction can prevent you from obtaining gainful employment and in Florida, employers are allowed to ask you about your criminal history. When they do, the below tips will ensure you are prepared to answer their questions and still get the job.
Be Honest About Your Past
It may seem tempting to lie about your criminal record on your application, but doing so is a mistake. Your employer will likely still learn about your history and when they do, they may fire you based on your deceitfulness alone. While you should remain honest about your arrest or conviction, do not say anything more on the application about it other than it happened. If the application asks for details, simply write that you will discuss it more during the interview. This will allow you to explain your situation in person.
Prepare for the Interview
When applying in person for a job, always dress professionally, as they may wish to interview you on the spot. If you are asked to interview for a job, it is important to prepare for questions about your criminal history. Remain as transparent as possible without going into too much detail. For example, you can admit that you were arrested for a DUI without going into detail about how much you had to drink beforehand.
Also focus on the lessons you learned, instead of focusing on the crimes. Tell the interviewer about any steps you have taken to correct the situation. For example, if you were arrested for a DUI because you had a drinking problem, talk about what you have done to deal with it and ensure it does not happen again. If you are working with a probation officer or counselor, also mention them during your interview, particularly if they can vouch for your progress.
Mention Government Programs
There are many government programs designed to protect employers when they hire high-risk employees, such as those with a criminal history. The Work Opportunity Tax Credit and the Federal Bonding Program are just two of these. A lot of employers are not aware of these programs, so mentioning that they are available may help you get the job.
Our Criminal Defense Lawyers in Orlando Can Defend Against Your Charges
Although it is not impossible to gain employment after an arrest or conviction, it does become much more difficult. The best way to avoid this problem is to defend against your charges successfully so you do not find yourself in that position. At O’Mara Law Group, our Orlando criminal defense lawyers know how to defend against your criminal charges to give you the best chance of a favorable outcome. Call us today at 407-634-6604 or contact us online to schedule a consultation.