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Asked by Bob on May 15, 2015

I have been offered a sales job at a major HVAC manufacturer. I have a DUI arrest; not a conviction. Also, I have a 6 year old misdemeanor reckless conduct in my background. Would this disqualify me from employment?

Answered by Ellen, Hiring Expert at Hospira, on May 18, 2015

This is a tough question, and admittedly, not my area of expertise. However, most companies do conduct background checks.  There are generally timeframes as to how far back in time the background is conducted. That does vary from company to company.  I would encourage you to complete any background questions with the truth. Depending on the company policy and how long ago you had the misdemeanors it could influence the decision to hire you or not.  The most important learning here is to be honest with any questions and be prepared to respond to any questions that might come your way.

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Answered by Tanya, Hiring Expert at Merck & Co., Inc., on May 18, 2015

This is a common question, the first thingI would recomend is being very open and honest on your background screen check and with your recruiter, full disclosure is always the way to go. In terms of disqualifying you for the position I am not able to answer this question because I am not sure of the nature of your sales position if it requires your to drive.

Good Luck

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Answered by Sara, Hiring Expert at American Express, on May 22, 2015

Your qualifications for the role will depend on company policy and if the role requires you to drive. Be transparent with Human Resources that this history may be flagged in your background check. If you anticipate this being a problem, work with them to provide any kind of legal documentation or references that would clarify your current status and help make the case for your employment.

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Answered by Stephanie, Hiring Expert at Emerson, on June 19, 2015

Congratulations on receiving a job offer!
Typically, arrests should not be considered when employers look at pre-screening results, but I would recommend that you be very open with the recruiter regarding the misdemeanor conviction and the status of the arrest (meaning have you been to court on it, is it still pending, etc). It is better for the company to hear from you upfront versus being surprised by the screening results. With any screening result, though, the recruiter should reach out to you and give you an opportunity to provide further information.

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