I started this new job but they keep pushing my start date back, and every time, call the day before my expected start date to tell me I will get a new project with a later start date until my background clears.

So I have a record and I asked if it’s because of that and they said no, they don’t know, they just know it hasn’t cleared and I can’t start until it does.

So I finally started this past Friday and got an email Saturday saying some may not be able to continue they just let us start anyway waiting on the rest of the background checks. Today, Sunday, I got the call saying I can’t come in tomorrow because of the background not clearing yet, and I will be assigned a new project and start date.

It’s because I’m a convict isn’t it? I don’t u first and how they had me submit all these background checks after hiring me and letting me accept the offers and I even got to start. Is this legal? I did not lie; I am honest on all applications FYI .

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    Are you using your real name as your username? If you are, I recommend you ask the mods to change your username. You don't want people to google your full name and find out that you're a convict. Anyway, in which jurisdiction are you in and what type of job are you applying for? The jurisdiction you're in (and the type of job you're applying for) will dictate how the background check is conducted. If you're in California for instance, this kind of stuff is highly regulated. In the meantime, you should keep on applying to other jobs. Commented Sep 26, 2021 at 21:15
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    You were up-front with them about your criminal record right? If so, there should be no surprises. If you were less than fully honest then that may be a bog problem.
    – jwh20
    Commented Sep 26, 2021 at 21:46
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    ”… apparently no convicts can work in that field…” Is that an Arizona or Virginia law/regulation or is it federal? A link to what you found may be useful. I agree with Stephan that regardless of what is going on, you should restart your job hunt.
    – BSMP
    Commented Sep 26, 2021 at 22:26
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    @joeqwerty, Background checks can be tricky, especially when multiple jurisdictions are involved. It's possible that they found someone with a criminal record, but that for legal reasons, they need to triple-check that it's the same person as the OP before giving out a definitive answer. All of this takes times. Commented Sep 26, 2021 at 22:51
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    @Tonia, The next thing you may want to change is your avatar. In this age of reverse-image searches and AI facial recognition, it's possible that your identity could be automatically uncovered by smart search engines. Commented Sep 26, 2021 at 22:56

2 Answers 2


This is more a general answer than a specific one for your case as of course nobody except those performing the checks can tell about that and they'll be under a strict NDA not to.

Security checks take time, sometimes a lot of time depending on the level of the clearance needed and the background of the person being checked.

For example for my clearance, which is minimal (access to some privileged data and secured facilities, and trust to work on software for higher secured areas) the check took 6 weeks. And that was considered to be fast, probably because I'm pretty boring with no criminal record, no relations to people from 'countries of interest', no travel record to such countries, and very few relatives.

For you, with a criminal record containing violent offenses (as per your admission in comments) it would likely take quite a bit longer to get the same clearance (though you may still have got it, not for me to know or say). If you're applying for a position that requires stricter background checks, it will take longer still. If you have a large family, those will have to be checked into (to some degree) as well, taking yet more time.

And if the agency performing the checks has to wait on things like court records, answers from agencies in other jurisdictions or even other countries, etc. etc., add even more time.

It is frustrating, I know, but that's the way it is even for someone who is squeaky clean (which you're not, apparently). E.g. my father would have had to wait longer than me for the same check I underwent because he'd traveled to Colombia once. That'd set off alarm bells about possible connections with drugs cartels (though it'd be easy to verify that one, as he went for business negotiations with government officials there). And they go back a LONG way for such things. 10 years or so where I live, maybe different where you are.

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    Just as an example it is taking the FBI upwards of 12-18 months for background checks for a SECRET clearance to be cleared, and that background check is just basic references, when compared to more involved security clearances. To be clear getting a SECRET clearance involves more than just references, but when compared to actual human interviews for more involved clearances, it's a piece of cake.
    – Donald
    Commented Sep 28, 2021 at 20:53

The process went through several legal jurisdictions, Virginia and Arizona. The lawyers may have taken a bit of time to untangle whether or not to apply Ariznona, or Virginia laws (Or federal) laws to see if you could pass a background check.

Most likely it was the Felony that tripped you up. Some states are more lenient than others, so it may have come down to the more stringent regulations being applied.

FYI, depending on the state, and the nature of the conviction, you may be able to get the conviction expunged from your record. It's worth investigating the requirements for your state to see if it is possible.

The real problem is that hiring convicted felons carries with it certain liabilities, and even though a company may want to take a risk, their insurance might block them.

The ray of hope here is that you impressed them enough to try to clear it through legal to hire you. It's frustrating, but try looking for programs that are partnered with companies looking to give felons a second chance. Some of these businesses are actually owned and run by convicted felons who don't mind giving them the second chance that they got, or was denied to them and they managed to get the business running.

Good luck, it looks like you're really trying to live the good life.

TLDR: Look to have your record expunged, and look for programs that partner with companies that hire convicts.

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    Thanks again everyone. So here’s an update : I received an email I think was supposed to come with the call I got on Sunday but it was the letter of separation it did not have a reason. The voicemail left on Sunday said I would be removed from this project and not to return to training since the background hasn’t cleared yet. Again and I’d be assigned to a new project with a later start date. Once again. Until my background clears…… I’d assume this email is the attachment to that voicemail I asked about any future projects but In reality I’ll read between the lines
    – Tonia
    Commented Sep 28, 2021 at 12:56
  • I’ve got several interviews lined up and I’m confident in my abilities.will be looking into expungement I know in order to overcome the statistics (I’ve pretty much put on myself) comes with struggles and things like this but it’s okay. I was tripped up this time because I’ve gotten clearances through jobs and passed checks before. A previous job I had with a courier and logistics comp I dealt with patient info and healthcare as well and had TSA clearance as well.
    – Tonia
    Commented Sep 28, 2021 at 13:07
  • After reading on my own and through the comments I suppose it’s levels to it. I appreciate everyone’s feedback so much. I will continue to move forward. Thank you all also. Can I apply for unemployment now ?
    – Tonia
    Commented Sep 28, 2021 at 13:07
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    @Tonia You've got a really good attitude, The kind that opens doors and makes people want to give you a chance, You own your bad choices and accept that you have to bear the consequences. That's far more than most people do. I've got a good feeling about you. Keep it up! We all have obstacles to overcome, but a good attitude can carry you through Commented Sep 28, 2021 at 13:37
  • well they just called and said that they have another project offer to give my background check time to come back. Do you all suggest I just send them their laptop and equipment back ? Throw the towel in I’m so confused by them. The company is called BroadPath anyone have or know of anything
    – Tonia
    Commented Sep 28, 2021 at 18:49

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