I was completing a job application and then I saw that:

Are you willing to submit a background check during the hiring process?

It completely put me off submitting my application since I am in full time employment - does this mean that the employer will contact my current employer for references prior to being offered a job?

Can I say 'no'?

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    No , think this is an American thing, in the UK they ask for a reference after you have been hired – bobo2000 Feb 25 '17 at 18:10

Can I say 'no'?

Yes, but if it's a requirement it means forfeiting any chance of getting the job.

A background check is usually to see if you have a criminal history, check your work history, educational achievements and things like that.

It's fairly normal in many industries. It doesn't mean that your current employer will be contacted, and in normal circumstances they're not. At least I've never seen it happen.

  • how are they going to check your work history without contacting your employer? – bobo2000 Feb 25 '17 at 12:56
  • You can ask that they do not contact your current employer. However, do include references for your past employers. – Frank FYC Feb 25 '17 at 13:16
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    @bobo2000 they check your history before your current job. If you say you were working from 1995 until 2000 at XX company, they check to make sure the dates are correct and any references you give them are not your mum signing a paper with her left hand... etc,. – Kilisi Feb 25 '17 at 14:18
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    They also run your credit history as well. – Richard Says Reinstate Monica Feb 25 '17 at 15:29
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    @bobo2000 That depends on the industry. In many areas, you simply wouldn't get the job if you failed the check, and they will hold off making a firm offer until you have passed that check. – Simon B Feb 25 '17 at 20:49

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