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How does a DUI affect a job search?

Our clients often come to us with concerns about retaining employment after a DUI conviction.

Even if they are qualified candidates for a position, they may worry that an employer will discriminate against them due to their criminal history.

But applicants are not always required to report their criminal history to a potential employer in the pre-screening process. Michigan law limits can ask about criminal records. Knowing the types of questions to expect may help prevent you from disclosing more than what is necessary.

Here are some things that job seekers with DUI arrests and convictions should know about hiring practices.

Can potential employers discriminate against applicants with criminal records?

Under the Civil Rights Act, it is unlawful for employers to have blanket policies that bar people with criminal convictions from applying for vacant positions. If an employer does not allow people with criminal pasts to apply they could be breaking the law.

What can potential employers ask me about my criminal past?

Employers are permitted to inquire about a prospective employee's criminal past under certain conditions. They can inquire about any convictions and felony arrests. It is also lawful for employers to require that all applicants undergo background checks.

During the pre-screening employment process, employers are not authorized to ask about misdemeanor arrests unless the vacant position is with law enforcement. Employers can inquire about any felony arrests and convictions that are disclosed by the employee or appear on a background check.

Keep in mind here that not all DUI arrests and convictions are felonies and you may not be required to report a criminal past. The nature of the offense will affect what potential employers can ask and what parts of your criminal record should be divulged.

Knowing your rights in a job search can help you to anticipate how the interview process will go and what you should be ready to disclose. The job search won't always be easy after a DUI but try not to let a criminal past deter you from seeking lawful employment and getting back on your feet.

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