How Does A Misdemeanor Impact Employment?

If you’re convicted of a misdemeanor, it can impact your employment opportunities and qualifications. 

Depending on the type of crime that you committed, some misdemeanors may result in incarceration or probation. 

In this article, we will talk about how a misdemeanor impact employment.

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Ways That A Misdemeanor Impact Employment

There are several ways that a misdemeanour impact employment. Here are a few:

1. Background Check

Misdemeanors will appear on a background check, making it difficult to get a job. 

Your record is still public information even if you have never been convicted of any crime and are not charged with one now. 

This means that employers can review your criminal history when deciding whether or not they want to hire you.

The good news is that most employers aren’t concerned with minor offences like trespassing or shoplifting.

They are more likely interested in whether or not an employee has ever been convicted of a felony or similar-level offence. 

It’s also important for applicants who want their background check conducted by an outside agency such as BackgroundCheckerPro because these companies often charge between $30 to $100 per search, depending on the type of criminal record requested.

2. Professional Licences And Employment Opportunities.

Misdemeanor convictions can permanently bar you from obtaining certain professional licenses and employment opportunities.

If you have a misdemeanor conviction, it may be grounds for disqualification from licensing boards or other agencies that monitor your behaviour. 

For example, if you were convicted of possession with intent to sell drugs in New York state, then the State Board of Pharmacy will not allow you to become a pharmacist in New York. 

They may take away any opportunity to practice pharmacy altogether, including but not limited to: state licensure. 

3. Title VII Protections

If you have a history of a misdemeanor, your criminal record can affect your ability to seek employment. 

This protection prevents employers from discriminating against job aspirants and employees as regards colour, race, religion, or national origin. 

This means an employer can’t terminate someone because they were arrested for a misdemeanor offence within two years of applying for a job or later than one year after being convicted.

Misdemeanor reduces your title vii protections. However, this doesn’t mean that all misdemeanors will necessarily lead to loss of employment rights.

It depends on how serious those offences were and how often they’ve happened in the past. 

For example, if you were arrested for shoplifting but never committed another crime or had just one previous drug conviction, then perhaps your employer won’t mind hiring.

4. Incarceration.

Misdemeanors may lead to incarceration. If you receive a misdemeanor conviction, you will likely be sentenced to jail, probation or fines. 

If you must serve punishments like jail time or probation, you cannot perform the duties in your contract.

5. Fair Credit Reporting Act Protections

Misdemeanor limits your fair credit reporting act protections.

The Fair Credit Reporting Act is a federal law that protects you from unfair practices in the consumer reporting industry. 

It covers employers, landlords, insurers and other businesses that provide consumer reports.

The FCRA does not protect you from the actions of a private individual who may access your personal information; rather, it protects against any harm caused by inaccurate or incomplete information on your credit report.

If you commit a misdemeanor, it will limit you. You will be held responsible for any suspicious report.

6. Professional courses

Misdemeanor convictions will prevent you from applying for professional courses. 

This is a big deal because it means you’ll have difficulty getting jobs in medicine and law enforcement. 

If you want to be employed by a pharmaceutical company or other organization where professionals are needed, don’t get caught up with a misdemeanor charge.

7. Termination Of Job Contract 

Convictions may be disclosed during a job interview and often result in termination. If you are asked about your criminal history, you should answer truthfully.

If you are not asked about your criminal history, it is still important that you remain truthful. 

The reason is that if an employer learns that an employee has been convicted of an offence, they did not disclose on their application or during an interview process, they could fire them immediately without any warning. 

This can happen even if there was no direct correlation between the offence and their work performance; as long as they knew it at some point before accepting employment with them, then it counts as being dishonest under federal law, and there’s no way around this requirement.

8. Inability To Rent an Apartment

Additionally, you may be unable to rent an apartment, and the landlord may evict you for having a misdemeanor on your record. 

If this happens, it could lead to stress which will impact your employment negatively and make it harder for you to find another place to live.

9. Military Job

You can’t join the military with a misdemeanor.

You cannot apply for a job with the military if you have a felony or criminal record.

If you are convicted of any assault, battery or domestic violence charge within five years of applying for a job with the armed forces like the Army, Navy, or Air Force, they won’t hire you.

Read Also: Can You Join The Military With A Felony?

Should I Reveal My Misdemeanor?

If you are asked about your criminal history, it is important, to be honest. 

Certain points should be considered before answering if you are asked about a misdemeanor conviction.

  • Do Not Lie

Lying can lead to further legal trouble and court penalties, including jail time and fines. 

Additionally, lying may cause other employers or potential employers to question whether they want someone with this background working for them.

  • Be Truthful

It is also important, to tell the truth, and include any details related to your case, so they know exactly why it happened. 

This will help ensure clarity when talking about employment opportunities with potential employers.


With the points in this article, it is easy to see how misdemeanor impacts employment.

It is vital to note that if you are convicted of a misdemeanor and it is not sealed, any employer can see your criminal record from public records. 

There is no way around this fact, so the decision on whether or not to disclose your conviction can only be made by you. 

If you are unsure whether revealing your conviction will affect your career opportunities, contact an attorney for further guidance.

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