What Can a Former Employer Say About You During a Background Check

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What Can a Former Employer Say About You During a Background Check


Have you ever lost a job because of a mistake that you may have made? What about a mistake that the employer made? Or maybe even because someone in the company may not have liked you but you were still effective at your job? What if you had a particularly difficult employer who could not seem to respect your personal time or boundaries while you were off the clock?

You may not have even been fired from the position. You may have left voluntarily because you just could not take it anymore. Then, as soon as you are safely on your way home and you start calling every contact you know to find another place of employment you start to wonder about what the former employer may say when a prospective employer calls to check your references.

First of all, if you worked for a large corporation, the human resource department handles all employment verification calls. Typically, they give standard answers for all verifications. Normally, they will only say whether or not you were employed there. The dates of employment and whether or not you would be eligible for rehire.

Companies try to keep their responses generic because there are legal implications involved if there is libel or slander accusations brought against them for any type of statement made that could be untrue and influence whether or not a person can obtain employment elsewhere. Therefore most companies have specific people trained to answer these types of requests. Usually they like to give their answers in writing so that no one can dispute the statement later.

Company policies are made in accordance with the particular state’s labor laws. For more information on your state’s laws you can contact the Department of Labor. Using their online resources or calling and speaking with a representative can help to ease your mind and also educate you just in case your former employer does say something that could be construed as slander or libel.

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