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Mount Holly Criminal Lawyer Discusses “Ban the Box” Law and Effect of Criminal Convictions on Employment

For decades, virtually every employment application included the common question, “Have you ever been convicted of a crime?”  It did not matter if it was a misdemeanor or perhaps a more serious offense that resulted in spending time in prison.  In the end, the decision as to which box to check (yes or no) undoubtedly had an impact on whether or not the applicant would be considered for the job.

Unfortunately, for as long as the question existed, hopeful unemployed candidates who have had a run in with the law have had little choice but to check the yes box.  The majority of employers used criminal convictions to screen applicants, only considering those who checked the no box, regardless of what a person has been convicted of.  This is at odds with allowing a person who has faced criminal charges to rehabilitate and become a productive citizen in society.

Ban the Box Laws

Many states are enacting “Ban the Box” legislation which is opening up job opportunities for some individuals who otherwise would not have been considered for employment.  This legislation prevents criminal history questions from being included on a job application. There are some jobs that are exempt from the Ban the Box law, including positions that require a person to work with children or law enforcement jobs.  In some locations, employers are permitted to ask about an applicant’s criminal history further into the hiring process.

Hawaii has been using the law since the late 1990s.  Other states and cities, such as New Jersey, Illinois and San Francisco, have recently enacted similar legislature. In some cities, like Washington, D.C., an employer cannot ask about prior arrests until an offer of conditional employment has been made.  In the city of Philadelphia the law states a person cannot be fired or an offer of employment cannot be retracted if a criminal case is closed and did not result in a conviction.

The more cities across the nation that pass Ban the Box ordinances will reduce the number of employers that have been previously allowed to blacklist individuals who have a criminal history.  Advocates of this legislation believe this will help many people return to being a productive part of society.

Mount Holly Criminal Lawyer Michele Finizio Provides Effective Legal Counsel for Those Facing Criminal Charges in New Jersey

If you or someone you know is facing criminal charges in New Jersey protect your rights by calling experienced and hard- working Mount Holly criminal lawyer, Michele Finizio, Esq.  Our criminal defense lawyers are dedicated to protecting your future.  Call 609.230.0374 to schedule a private no cost consultation or simply submit an online inquiry.  Our office is located in Moorestown, New Jersey and serve clients throughout Southern New Jersey including those in Mount Holly, Cherry Hill and Moorestown including the communities of Burlington County, Camden County, Gloucester County and Salem County.

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I could not have asked for a better attorney. Michele Finizio treated my cases and the cases of those I've recommended, as if we were part of her family.

-D.A.