When you face drug charges, a conviction can have long-lasting consequences on your future. In addition to paying expensive fines and serving jail time, you experience significant changes in your life.
With a drug arrest or conviction on your record, you may find it challenging to find work. You need to know your rights under federal and state laws when looking for employment.
How can employers use criminal records?
Employers typically run a background check when screening job applicants. Employers requesting criminal background screenings must follow the rules of the Fair Credit Reporting Act by:
- Disclosing that they may access a consumer report during the hiring process
- Getting your written authorization to obtain a report
- Providing you with a copy of the report
- Notifying you if your criminal record disqualifies you from employment
How can you be proactive when applying for jobs?
While drug arrests and convictions can hinder your chances of finding employment, knowing your options can help you take control of your situation. Address your situation head-on:
- Run a background check on yourself. This process gives you a clear picture of what information prospective employers can access. You can also identify and correct any mistakes.
- Research your legal rights. Take the time to understand your protections under Florida law.
- Read applications carefully. Always be honest, but know that you only need to provide the information requested.
- Seal or expunge your record. If you can “erase” your criminal record, you no longer have to disclose it on job applications.
- Prepare for discussions about your history. Focus on what you have learned from your experiences.
Although drug charges affect your job prospects, you can start to rebuild your life when you understand your rights under Florida law.