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I am currently working for Company A for almost a year as a contractor and was recently offered to come onto the company's payroll. After a brief conversation with my manager, he sent over the information for a background check application with "Employment History" as the first set of information to be completed. I started working for a second contract at Company B a couple of months after starting at Company A. This second contract will be wrapping up soon. Both contracts were through separate contracting agencies.

Do I need to put on this form that I worked for this second contract while employed still under contract with Company A? Or is it better to put the information on the form, and just explain this if the background company decides to bring it to their attention?

I was a contractor so they never really explicitly told me I couldn't work for another company while on contract with them, but since it's a short contract I feel like I should be able to keep it off of the form to avoid any confrontation.

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    Is there a reason for the downvote? I'd like to know what I did wrong as this is my first post – DEnumber50 Jan 11 '17 at 20:09
  • I'm not completely sure why the downvote, but my guess is because this can be best answered by asking your manager or the company doing the background check. – David K Jan 11 '17 at 20:13
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    Well with the severity of the answer here I obviously would like to be discrete about it and get some opinions for some professionals – DEnumber50 Jan 11 '17 at 20:14
  • Were you an independent contractor, or did you technically work for a contracting agency? If the latter, was it the same agency for both contracts? – David K Jan 11 '17 at 20:25
  • Contracting agency, two separate contracting agencies – DEnumber50 Jan 11 '17 at 20:50
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Lying on a background check is probably not a good idea

At best, it's unethical. At worst - depending on your local laws - it may even be illegal. Somewhere in between, such a lie could cost you the position you're aspiring to. It's highly likely to be discovered, and almost certainly guaranteed to harm your eligibility. As it will likely be reported as a discrepancy on whatever report the background firm generates, it may even draw more attention to the secondary contract.

Any discrepancies between your self report and the Background Check could compromise the success of the background check, and will be brought up to the requesting entity in the report.

The background check company will be reviewing you employment history closely. To think that they wouldn't discover your employment history would be quite amazing. If they do discover your employment and that it doesn't match your own reported history, it will be brought up as a discrepancy on their final report, and affect the score of how trustworthy you are as an individual.

  • So if I do decide to place this on the form, it's more likely to not come to the attention of the company that gave me the offer? – DEnumber50 Jan 11 '17 at 21:17
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    I think the biggest takeaway is - why do you have a piece of employment history that you're so desperate to hide? I don't work for your company's HR, and I don't work for the security background company - So I can't say what they're looking for, what they'll include on the report, how diligent they will be on certain things, etc. However, a Background Check is for the purpose of determining risks to the company - whether it be from conflicts of interest, security, financial risk, etc. In every situation, lying presents a risk to the company that the check is designed to discover. – bobthefunny Jan 11 '17 at 21:37
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    Never play loose with a background check. Better to have something bad you were upfront about than them find something bad on their own. This goes double for security clearances. – Bill Leeper Jan 11 '17 at 21:58
  • @bobthefunny it's not that I want to hide it, I just don't want this to hinder me if that makes sense. – DEnumber50 Jan 11 '17 at 22:07
  • If you don't list it, and it's discovered, are you prepared to lose the job offer? – Donald Jan 12 '17 at 2:27
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Do I need to put on this form that I worked for this second contract while employed still under contract with Company A? Or is it better to put the information on the form, and just explain this if the background company decides to bring it to their attention?

I think it would be a mistake to intentionally omit something from your job history on your background check form.

Any decent check will turn up this job, and then you will have to answer for the omission. You will come off looking deceitful.

If I were doing the hiring and the contract at Company B bothered me, I'd discuss it with you. But if the background check turned up that you not only worked for Company B but also chose not to mention that fact when specifically asked to list all of your jobs, I'd probably not discuss it with you at all - I just wouldn't hire you.

Just be up front about it. That's almost always the best policy.

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