Job applications asks about felonies and misdemeanors

  1. 0
    In 2007, I was charged for possession of alcohol in public, which was a petty misdemeanor. I was recently approved by the state's board of nursing to take the nclex (after showing proof of court records and an explanation) and successfully passed and received my license.

    Now that I'm filling out applications for jobs, and even for apartments, Im wondering if I should disclose information about my petty misdemeanor when the applications specifically asks for felonies or misdemeanors? I would really hate it if my cousin and I get rejected for an apartment we are trying to get, after being found with a positive criminal background because I checked "NO" on the application that asked if I was ever charged for a felony or misdemeanor. Obviously, I checked "NO" simply because a "petty misdemeanor" is neither a felony nor a misdemeanor.

    I ran a check on the BeenVerified website, and nothing showed up. But I also ran a check on our government website which came out positive, but clearly states its a Petty misdemeanor.
  2. 5 Comments so far...

  3. 0
    Your employer is going to run a background check before you are hired (or possibly before you're interviewed).

    If you stated you've never been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor, and your background check comes back that you have been convicted of one, you'll likely not be hired because you were not honest on your application (and you have to sign that says you were truthful). Most applications also give you a space to explain your answer, if you choose yes.

    I don't know what state you are in, but in my state a petty misdemeanor is a misdemeanor. There are petty misdemeanors, misdemeanors, and gross misdemeanors. If you were convicted of a gross misdemeanor would you also check NO on an application because it's not a misdemeanor?
  4. 0
    If you were convicted, a petty misdemeanor is still a misdemeanor. I would not lie. I would check YES and include an explanation. No one will keep you out of an apartment for that.
  5. 0
    Unfortunately, a misdemeanor is a misdemeanor. Regardless of if it is a petty misdemeanor or 1st degree. The only way you can legally and honestly check no is if you have had your record expunged/sealed. By checking '"no" you have falsified your application.
  6. 0
    Thanks for the input. I talked to an officer in my family and he stated that it would be fine if I checked NO. But to play it safe, I think I'll check Yes and provide an explanation.
  7. 0
    Since your record CAN be found by employers--who often run background and record checks even if you check "No"--honesty would be better for you.

    Also, in my experience, HR would rather you disclose anything you are not sure of and provide an explanation upfront, than to be surprised when they run the check.

    Good luck.


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