In this new era of modernization and globalization, employers have become increasingly concerned about knowing if an applicant has a criminal record or mental illness. More employers are conducting pre-employment background checks for these kind of drawbacks. Employers have been the subject of large jury verdicts for negligent hiring in cases where they hire a person with a criminal record or a mental illness that might harm others or cause difficulties for the company, and it could have been avoided by a background record check. That is because employers have a legal duty to exercise due diligence in the hiring process, and that duty can be violated if an employer hires someone that they either knew or should have known in the exercise of reasonable care was dangerous or unfit for a job. The concern from the employer's point of view is that a person with a criminal past may have a propensity to re-offend in the future.
Referring to people with criminal backgrounds, society also has a vested interest in helping people with a past criminal record obtain and maintain employment. It is difficult for an ex-offender to become a law abiding, tax-paying citizen without a job. Unless society wants to continue to spend its tax dollars on building more and more jails and prisons, ex-offenders need the opportunity to rejoin the workforce. For an ex-offender, a job search can become a frustrating. Nearly every employment application will ask in some fashion if a person has a criminal record. If a person lies, then they are always at risk of being terminated upon such a criminal record being discovered. If a person is honest and admits the past misconduct, there is a risk of not getting the job.
There is no perfect answer. A person with a criminal record is going to face greater challenges in getting employment. There are certain jobs where an employer will justifiably not hire an ex-offender. However, challenging is not the same as impossible. The key is the right...
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