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Q: Covering Up a Felony Conviction on a Resume ( Answered,   8 Comments )
Subject: Covering Up a Felony Conviction on a Resume
Category: Business and Money > Employment
Asked by: dfredrick2929-ga
List Price: $30.00
Posted: 06 Mar 2005 20:41 PST
Expires: 05 Apr 2005 21:41 PDT
Question ID: 485943
I was arrested for a felony in Connecticut when I was 17 years old.  I
was classified as a "Youth Offender".  This was a class D felony
(lowest kind).  Larceny in the 3rd degree.  I am now 23, post-college,
and want to apply for a job.  Disclosing the conviction is not an
option.  My question is:

How can I cover up this conviction so that my employer remains
unaware?  Would a name change in a state that only keeps local records
do the trick, or are the criminal checks done via Social Security
Number?  Would I have to move to a different country?  Also, if I
applied for a job in Canada, would they do a criminal check in the

NOTE:  I know that the answerer is not encouraging me to do anything
illegal, and I know he/she is not giving me legal advice, and they
will not be held responsible... etc... etc...
Subject: Re: Covering Up a Felony Conviction on a Resume
Answered By: tisme-ga on 06 Mar 2005 21:36 PST
Hello dfredrick2929,

Hiding a criminal record is not something that works, and if you
attempt to do so you could be heading for trouble. I have had to
undergo several criminal background checks in the last few years
because I have worked in positions where I have been in a sensitive
position of trust. There are different levels of criminal record
checks, but post September 11, not only are more
companies/organizations performing background checks but they are
doing them as completely as possible.

Changing your name would not work for the simple fact that criminal
record checks will ask you whether you have ever changed your name,
and they will even ask you for any nicknames and/or alias you have
been known by. They ask for all of your addresses in the last 5 to 10
years as well as other information. If you give fake information and
this is discovered, you will lose all chances of getting the job and
might actually get into trouble if you do it knowingley. Not
surprisingly, all criminal record checks that I have completed have
asked me if I have ever been convicted or charged with a crime, to
which you are also obligated to provide a truthful response.

Quite frankly, even if you lied on these forms it would be fairly easy
for the discrepancies to come up because you always need to show at
least two pieces of ID, such as your birth certificate and your Social
Insurance Number which will also be queried in the database.

Your best route is to attempt to get a pardon to get your conviction
buried. The fact that you were under 18 and that the crime was not
serious will work greatly to your advantage. If you have a background
in volunteering your time to the community, a glowing academic record
or evidence of a changed life, these things will also aid you in your
quest to get the conviction erased from your record.

From the website of attorney Ralph D. Sherman
( he informs us that
you can only try once every year to get a conviction erased by the
Board of Pardons. He also maintains that to the best of his knowledge,
he handles the most cases before the Connecticut Board of Pardons than
any other attorney in the state. Your best bet would be to find an
attorney and attempt to get the conviction erased. From what I can
gather of your situation, I am not sure that you would actually need
an attorney, but that is a decision you will have to make based on how
much risk you are willing to take in this matter, and whether you can
wait a full year if your individual attempt fails to try again.

Some overview information on pardons in Connecticut can be found at
this page:
. Because five years have already elapsed since your conviction at 17,
you are now eligible to apply for a pardon.

The phone number for the Pardons and Parole Office is (203) 389-5390.
The board only meets twice each year in the Spring and Fall. Here is
the information relevant to you: ?Non-inmates can petition for a
pardon if at least five years have elapsed from the date of completion
of the sentence, including a suspended sentence together with any term
of probation attached.? You or your attorney should call the Secretary
of the Board of Pardons and Paroles for an application form at this
number: 203-389-5390.

Attorney Ralph D. Sherman states on his website that if you are
granted a pardon by the Board of Pardons, you may state under oath
that you have never been arrested. This seems to be exactly what you
want to be able to do, although you should be aware that depending on
how sensitive your position is, you may also be asked if you have ever
been pardoned for any crimes. I assume that the Board of Pardons
office or your attorney if you choose to utilize the services of one
would be able to inform you of the particulars involved.
I hope that this answer will prove satisfactory for you. If you
require additional clarification or assistance, please let me know and
I will do my best to further assist you.

Also you should be aware that having a criminal record does not
necessarily mean that you will not get a job. Many high profile people
(George Bush included) have past criminal records. It will probably
work against you, but if you can demonstrate your worth over somebody
who does not have a criminal record, changes are you will do fine as
long as you are honest about your past.


Search Strategy:

connecticut pardon
connecticut criminal record pardon
connecticut criminal record
connecticut "board of pardons"

Clarification of Answer by tisme-ga on 06 Mar 2005 21:40 PST
With regards to your question about applying for a job in Canada, your
past conviction would still come up. In fact, a pardon granted to you
in the US might not even be recognized in Canada. See:


Request for Answer Clarification by dfredrick2929-ga on 07 Mar 2005 17:05 PST

Although I thank you for your diligent research - it appears that my
question has not been answered.  I asked how I can cover it up - not
how I can get the incident pardoned or expunged.  These two things
will still show up on any record.  What I need is a clean slate - not
a wiped down one.  I know that there ARE ways to go about this.  I
need to know if background checks are driven by SSN or name.   I need
to know, if I get a name changed in a state that only keeps local
records - can anyone link the two names?

Please research deeper into this instead of the pardoning side of my
option.  This is what (I thought) my question asked for.  I await your

Request for Answer Clarification by dfredrick2929-ga on 07 Mar 2005 17:08 PST
Also, you said "

Quite frankly, even if you lied on these forms it would be fairly easy
for the discrepancies to come up because you always need to show at
least two pieces of ID, such as your birth certificate and your Social
Insurance Number which will also be queried in the database.

Once I change my name, I can obtain a new birth record and Drivers
License.  The only link to my names will be the SSN.

Clarification of Answer by tisme-ga on 07 Mar 2005 19:10 PST
Hello dfredrick2929,

Looking at copies of some of the criminal checks I have completed,
they only accept certain types of ID and a driver's license is not one
that they accept. Regarding getting a new birth record, wouldn't your
card have the date that the card was created on it, at the very least
signifying that it is not the original copy? Also, would you be
willing to answer "no" when asked if you have ever been convicted of a
crime if this is not true?

For most criminal record checks, social security numbers are not
mandatory but they require two other solid pieces of ID. You should
also be aware that some criminal record checks such as federal RCMP
criminal records check in Canada require a mandatory fingerprint

This information is important to your request for clarification point:

"It is not possible to "plug in" someone's Social Security number into
a criminal records database and find all the criminal convictions
pertaining to that individual.  Criminal records are indexed by the
name of the defendant. Therefore, getting the correct spelling of the
name is critical to obtaining accurate results. If the person had a
former name, that name should also be checked. In those jurisdictions
where the clerk of court will be performing the research, a full date
of birth is usually required."

The above information implies that the only use for a social security
number is to verify that a criminal record that has been found is tied
to a specific person. While it appears that this would be a good
solution, the problem seems to be that if you have a prior conviction,
getting a change of name is not an easy task. Many websites I
researched had information similar to this:
"6. Legal and Creditor Status:  Petitioner does not have any
outstanding judgments, has never been convicted of a crime, and is not
involved in any pending legal actions." (You have to swear under
perjury that you don't have any conviction). SOURCE:

There are some products you can buy that are supposed to clear your
criminal record. One of them implies that after getting a pardon, you
will be given further instructions. See: "How to clear your criminal
record" at

This publicaton has some interesting ideas and information on how to
handle a criminal record:

Also, this information might prove to be very useful to you: "Criminal
records generally are kept seven years, so an applicant is not
discriminated against for a mistake made earlier in his or her life.
Juvenile records are not accessible for pre-employment screening. Once
a person turns 18, the record is expunged." SOURCE:

Have you recently checked your criminal record? Perhaps upon turning
18, your conviction vanished?

I hope that this additional research helps you!


Request for Answer Clarification by dfredrick2929-ga on 07 Mar 2005 20:47 PST
This is exactly the information I was looking for.  Thank you very
much.  My only additional question is - would a state where I got my
name changed (Despite not having a "legal" residence there), (so it
would not show up on address history) run a background check to make
SURE I was never convicted of a crime?


Clarification of Answer by tisme-ga on 08 Mar 2005 19:12 PST
Hello dfredick2929,

What state(s) are you thinking of? All of them have different criteria
for a name change. If you give me the states on your shortlist, I can
do some research into those for you.


Request for Answer Clarification by dfredrick2929-ga on 08 Mar 2005 20:42 PST
Hello, I have heard that Montana only keeps local records, and would
be the best place to perform the change.

Clarification of Answer by tisme-ga on 09 Mar 2005 21:00 PST
Hello dfredrick2929,

I have done some work for you regarding researching Montana, but am
still trying to verify the information so far. I know that you do need
to reside in Montana to have the name change done, but am still trying
to find out if they do a criminal records check on name change


Clarification of Answer by tisme-ga on 13 Mar 2005 11:36 PST
Hello dfredrick2929,

From telephone conversations I have gathered that there are criminal
records checks done in some cases in Montana, but have been unable to
get information on what triggers these, as well as how they are done
(national, local etc.). I assume that it is saying that you have a
prior criminal record.

Subject: Re: Covering Up a Felony Conviction on a Resume
From: zapthis-ga on 12 Aug 2005 10:47 PDT
It doesn?t matter if you change your name or not. Every criminal
background done on me was always traced back to my original name.

But who knows you may get lucky. I was thinking Canada myself, because
you will be punished for the rest of your life for what you did as a
teenager here in the USA. I?m negative because I?ve given up finally,
after 14 years of perfect citizenship,  trying to find a job that pays
more than 7 bucks and hour. Two years since my layoff in 2003 , but oh
well I no longer have any motivation because I?m treated like a
terrorist now. Most employers would rather see you die than even give
you chance in hell even though you have an incredible work history and
shown a track record of honesty. They may get there wish.

I know I did wrong and everyday I wish I could change it, but I can?t.
The punishment will never stop; it doesn?t matter if you completed
probation without one single problem. For 14 to 15 years, you will
never get the job enless you are so lucky you know someone. The degree
is worthless I have one.
I have a criminal record with felonies when I was 17 and 18 and now
I?m 35. I?ve never been any trouble what?s so ever since. The felonies
are not violent they were drug related. Very bad and I deserve to be
punished, but for how much longer? I?ve lost my child to abortion
because I was told I?m unfit to be a father because the felony will
cause you to never be able to support us properly. I thank you for
this employers.

I hate to let you know it?s going to be a road worse than hell in my
opinion, after Sept 11 ,  90% ..yes 90% of all employers do background
checks now.

But my advice to you on the lying part. If they hire you and later
they find out they will fire you no matter how hard you work there.
You lied, so this tells the employer you are not very honest in their
eyes. Be honest and list it, the chances you getting any job will be
very slim. Degree or no degree. Even though I?ve yet to find a good
income job, since I was laid off from a fortune 500 company I still do
not lie on my application. But I?m starting to think I should, but
what?s the point.

Try explaining, you may get a very good person that believes you have
changed. But inTexas, you find just a handful. It really doesn?t
matter what you know.
Subject: Re: Covering Up a Felony Conviction on a Resume
From: rayntx-ga on 24 Aug 2005 09:42 PDT
I have a felony from 8years ago and I can't find a job to save my
life! I have went from company to company looking for work and
everyone wants to know about my past. I have looked into name changes
and all that stuff don't work. I have found a few jobs but I had to
contract to small company if thats what you want to call them? In the
end I end up getting screwed over money or time in have put in to the
job. I am at the point that I don't know what to do anymore? I have
two little boys that I am raising alone and my time is running out. I
got layed off 1year ago and now I find my self  having to sell or loan
eveything I have worked so hard to get. I thought if i lied on my past
for a job and they found out later about it, that would give me time
to show them what a good worker I really am. I just don't think it
will work though, so I'll keep on looking untill I have to give my
kids up and live on the streets I guess?
Subject: Re: Covering Up a Felony Conviction on a Resume
From: zapthis-ga on 21 Sep 2005 11:32 PDT
It seems like the only thing to do is shoot yourself at the
whitehouse. Or maybe my state capital. I guess that's the answer for
me. But not for you guys. Maybe I can help change it for you all. I've
had it.
Subject: Re: Covering Up a Felony Conviction on a Resume
From: nomad1-ga on 23 Sep 2005 04:13 PDT
And I used to think I was just having the worst of luck. Until this
week. I got my secong consecutive turn down where they actualy told me
why they wouldnt hire me .... absolutly positivle will not hire
someone with a criminal conviction from 1979. And this is for a
machine operator position? Add that to my home depot rejection notice
and I get curious and come on line and do a little surfing and it
seems I am one of millions of people with this same BAD LUCK problem.
It aint the economy , is it, Its the whole society that has turned
sick. Cant beleive I can go from engineering to cant mop floors in a
few years. Let me go out and buy a flag. Im going to do some digging
and if I cant find a compromise I can tell you I wont be shooting
myself but Im not going to beg or just let myself starve either. Now
lets all get together and sing a few lines of god bless america while
we watch lines of immigrnats land every job there is because they can
clear computer checks in systems that they dont exist in. Better yet ,
lets try verifying that degree from WhomLyFee University. I know I
rant, but thats what happens after another night of no sleep.
Subject: Re: Covering Up a Felony Conviction on a Resume
From: aikolga-ga on 30 Sep 2005 10:04 PDT
Don't lie. Don't give up!! Its harder than hell especially since 9-11
to get anything above a minimum wage job even if you are educated or
have technical skills but thats the way it is!! I got mine in 1998- 3
counts and finally got a break thru a program at the employment office
where they pay half your wages for three months to an employer and do
frequent checks with the employer during that time.  Been laid off
(not my fault and I got excellent references) twice since then
including now.  Each time it seems impossible and I get so frustrated
but I have full custody of my 8 year old son and am his only support
so I keep trying.  Tried lying, it bit me in the butt.  It takes money
to get your record expunged (and it doesn't always happen) but I am
going to try next year if I can afford it.  Those employers that won't
even give you a chance are losing out, and you show those that do give
you a chance what a great employee you can be.  Of course, you have to
turn in a hundred applications to get even ten calls to interview but
thats the way our crazy society works.  Its easy to see why people get
frustrated enough not to stay straight but for me its not an option...
Subject: Re: Covering Up a Felony Conviction on a Resume
From: nomad1-ga on 02 Oct 2005 08:26 PDT
Another week and I can tell you I have given up. Not giving up living
but am giving up playing this rigged game. Time is too precious to
spend one more minute of it begging pious employers to make exceptions
to cast in stone rules of how they cna legaly exclude all but their
own kind from everything they control. I am now dedicating my time in
two areas ...1) leaning on legislators to change the laws these scum
employers use to exploit people and 2) starting my own business.
I have an advantage over some of you younger ex offenders, that is I
have seen a lot of things in my days ... namely when a system is
entirely rigged to punish a particular classification of people
eventualy a new system is put in place where eventualy one can actualy
USE that handicap to your advantage. I am now going to see if I can
play my "unemployable convict" lable to acquire fed assistance to
start business. Might work.If it does I will have my own applications
printed that will read ... Have you ever been arrested *yes*no ...
note an answer of no will not neccesarily be a bar to consideration of
you for this position and blah blah blah ... :)
Subject: Re: Covering Up a Felony Conviction on a Resume
From: elijah007-ga on 25 Nov 2005 10:36 PST
A real hard but simple work around for these convictions is....

To start your own company, you do not need to work for someone else. I
know it is easier said than done but it is a very real oportunity
these days. There are many ways of earning money besides working for a

Read the book - "The E-Myth" and go from there..

Good Luck

Subject: Re: Covering Up a Felony Conviction on a Resume
From: adept2006-ga on 25 Nov 2005 22:18 PST
I recruit for a 1.2 billion dollar company in sales this year. We do
not discriminate against people with past criminal records. We are in
the process of releasing Breakthrough technology that will double our
sales in the next calendar year. Worldwide Patented technology. If you
want to make a change in your life and the world's, find out more by
contacting me at:

H.N Kelly
Regional Director
Innovatve Concepts

P.S. Please include reference to this forum

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