How to Fail an Employment Background Check

Many people worry about failing a background check, especially people who are looking for a job. There are several answers. In this article, we break down the ways you can fail and offer tips to succeed based on information from background check authority UnMask.

The job Requires High Security Clearance, but You Have a Record

Positions requiring security clearance hold candidates to a high standard. You might be disqualified even before getting to the stage of the clearance check. If there is a single crime on your record, but it’s a serious one, you will fail the check. This also goes for crimes like embezzlement, a series of minor offenses, financial crimes like tax evasion, sexual offenses, cybercrimes, and crimes related to misuse of drugs or alcohol. A medical history of personality disorders has been known to disqualify people too. More information is available from the US State Department.

You’ve Committed Offenses Relevant to Job Tasks

If you’ve been convicted of a crime related to future job tasks, you can fail the check and be denied the job. Companies are obligated to keep their workplaces and employees safe. This precludes discrimination related to a job candidate’s criminal record.

You can’t become a teacher if you’ve committed a sex offense. You also won’t get any job that involves interacting with children, elderly people, disabled people, and any other groups perceived as vulnerable.

Poor Credit History

Some screenings don’t include a credit check. Background checks that do and reveal a poor rating will be held against you by many employers, particularly if you’re applying for a job in the finance sector. Don’t worry. This isn’t a guarantee you’ll fail. Many employers understand that someone’s credit rating can result from a mistake they made when they were younger, divorce, or the loss of a loved one. Even if you fail this part of the screening, you won’t necessarily be denied the job unless it involves handling money.

If you’re worried about your credit rating, honesty could well be the best policy. Should your employer ask you about it, let them know what happened and openly discuss credit history issues.

Dishonorable Discharge

Do you have a dishonorable discharge from the military on your record? It’s at the employer’s discretion whether to give you the job or not. Keep in mind the full details won’t necessarily be included in the screening report. If the employer sees it as a mark against you, it will affect your chances adversely. This might be more common for positions in finance or security as these normally require a squeaky-clean record.

Exaggerated Credentials and Experience

Many applicants embellish or outright lie on their resumes to increase their chances. You might fill in an employment date you’ve forgotten randomly. This isn’t a problem in most cases. It’s important to note that there’s a difference between a random date and lying about certificates or credentials. At best, inconsistent credentials look bad. In worse cases, they could lead to fraud accusations.

Tips on Passing a Check Brilliantly

Nobody’s perfect. If your record isn’t spotless, talk to your potential employer about any issues. Being open, clear, and detailed can go a long way toward augmenting your integrity and trust in the employer’s eyes. It never hurts to run a check on yourself in advance to be prepared for what might show up. If you have the funds, you could get a third party to perform a screening before applying for any job. This way, you’ll be sure of what you can expect. If it’s not within budget, use different sources to run a check on yourself. You can do a google search of your name at the very least.

Don’t Lose Hope: Failing is Never Certain

If you have a criminal record, you might fail the check. This won’t mean you’ll never get the job though. An employer risks facing a discrimination lawsuit if they deny every single candidate who has a criminal record.

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