Top Ways to Find a Job with a Felony Record

Top Ways to Find a Job with a Felony RecordIn many ways, things are better than ever for those who want to find a job despite a felony record. According to the National Employment Law Project, 37 states and more than 150 cities and counties across the U.S. have “ban the box” laws. Those laws mean that just because you have a felony on your record, you’re not automatically disqualified from jobs you have the skills to perform.

Those laws, along with 2019’s landmark Fair Chance to Compete for Jobs legislation, are changing the landscape. A number of those “ban the box” laws extend to private employers as well as public ones.

Dallas County, for example, has a “ban the box” policy in place. As its website notes, such a policy brings a whole host of benefits, including:

  • Safer communities
  • Less childhood poverty
  • Allowing people to come back into the community
  • Reducing the chances criminals will return to prison
  • Make families stronger
  • Bringing more potential workers to the workforce

These changes in the law help people resume their lives after they serve their time for felonies. But even with those new statutes in place, there’s no guarantee that a person with a felony record will find work.

Here are some top ways to find a job if you have a felony record.

Rely on the Network You Have

For many with a felony record, your network might be just friends and family, but even that might be enough to get started. Friends and family will know your character best. They’re more likely to take a chance on you. And once you have a job, you’ll start interacting with other people, and you’ll be able to build a bigger network.

Seek Out Small Businesses

Top Ways to Find a Job with a Felony RecordSmall businesses are less likely to make applicants undergo a screening process that asks about felonies. There are also fewer hoops to jump through in general with a small business. You’ll likely be able to talk to the person you’ll be working with directly. If that person likes you and thinks you can do the work, that could be enough to help you land the job.

Be Honest

That doesn’t mean you should lie about your record, however. The subject might come up when you must explain the gap in your resume. If you do have to talk about it, be direct without sharing too many details.

Emphasize that you’ve learned your lesson and that you want to stay on the straight and narrow. Lots of people out there believe in second chances. Show that you’re a believer in that as well. Not everyone will be comfortable hiring people with a record, but some will be willing to do so.

Work Online

Even before the pandemic changed how many of us work, companies have made online work an option. It makes sense for many businesses. There’s less overhead when you’re not renting office space. You can hire anyone who lives anywhere when all it takes to get to work is logging in. The Help for Felons site provides a resource list of online jobs to get started.

Go It Alone

Depending on your skills, you might look at the option of starting your own business. Hiring yourself guarantees you’ll have a job. Obviously, the less capital you need to start, the easier it will be. It’s possible, though, that if you start small, you can build up your business over time. If you’re successful enough, you might even be in a position to hire other people with felony records.

Consider Expunging Your Record

All this advice can help you find a job and turn your life around after a felony. But what if you didn’t have a felony on your record at all?

Texas law allows for expunction in certain cases. You might qualify to have your record expunged if you’ve served your time for a felony. At Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter, we’ve compiled some information on our website to get you started. Many people out there are living with the stigma of a criminal record, thinking that it will always be a part of their lives.

Yet it doesn’t have to be. By expunging or sealing your criminal record, you can unshackle yourself from your felony history holding you back. Whether you’re trying to get a job, return to school or take care of financial matters, wiping your slate clean can make a tremendous difference.

Contact Us Today

Contact the Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter at (214) 845-7007 for a free initial consultation. We can go over your convictions and determine whether expunction or non-disclosure options apply. Either one of those options could literally change your life forever.

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