How can bankruptcy affect my job opportunities?
Filing bankruptcy is never easy, but it’s great to get a fresh start. Nonetheless, you may already know that it does come at a cost, including preventing you from getting jobs in the private sector.
Personal bankruptcy does not affect your current employment per sé, but it can influence other job opportunities. Continue reading below to see the laws that apply, and check if you should contact a Gilbert bankruptcy attorney.
Can My Employer Find Out About My Bankruptcy?
You don’t have to inform your employer about your bankruptcy. You don’t have to let them know you filed for Chapter 7 or 13. Most of the time, employers don’t even find out this information.
Notice that your employer can be asked to stop the wage garnishment because the debt was discharged. But, it only happens if your wages were garnished before.
Another example is when jurisdictions ask you to pay your debts directly out of your paycheck, which will surely inform the employer. However, this situation isn’t that common, it’s indeed rare.
Another rare example is when your employer is one of your creditors due to wage overpayment. In that case, the employer will be informed.
Nevertheless, if none of these situations apply to you, your employer won’t find out unless you inform them directly.
Can I Be Fired Or Turned Down?
No, you cannot be fired just for bankruptcy, even if your employer finds out. Federal law protects debtors from employment discrimination. Employers cannot fire you for filing Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
If you suffer discrimination, you should consult with a Gilbert bankruptcy attorney. A lawyer is usually the best option to understand your rights better.
There’s one exception to this rule, and that’s related to a job application. You may be required to submit a credit report to complete a background check during a job application. In that case, private-sector employees can consider that information when hiring.
In other words, they can consider hiring you or not AFTER checking your credit record, but ONLY when that’s a plus to other evaluations during the job application process, meaning that they cannot deny your application just because of the credit record.
Take into account that private-sector employers can turn down your application if you don’t permit them to check your credit record.
Once again, remember that this is just a possibility. Most employers do not hire people based on credit scores unless the job is related to fields like bookkeeping or accounting. In the end, factors like skills, work history, and knowledge will be more important.
You should not feel ashamed of having bad credit. Many Americans have the same financial problems and they continue applying for numerous jobs.
If you still have doubts about this topic, feel free to contact a Gilbert bankruptcy law office. A law firm can give you the best guidance related to bankruptcy laws so that you don’t stress about it while working or finding a job.
Basics About Discrimination Laws And Bankruptcy
Federal law forbids both government and private-sector employers from discriminating against employees who file for bankruptcy.
You can find these laws in the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, which is the federal law that reviews bankruptcy processes.
Here’s a brief explanation of this code:
Regarding Government Agencies, Section 525 of the Bankruptcy Code says that they are prohibited from:
- denying employment
- terminating the employment
- otherwise discrimination concerning employment
Any employee who’s a debtor.
In short, government agencies cannot refuse to hire, fire, or discriminate against you just because you file for bankruptcy.
As for private-sector employers, Section 525 of the Bankruptcy Code remains almost the same as government agencies. But, there’s a difference, and that’s denying employment.
Case law has interpreted this omission as intentional because private employers CAN deny employment to applicants who have filed for bankruptcy. However, it’s not that common.
What Should I Do If I Am Discriminated Against? Do I Need To Contact a Gilbert Bankruptcy Lawyer?
In conclusion, it is against the law to discriminate against citizens who file for bankruptcy. Unfortunately, that discrimination still happens.
If you think an employer or potential employer is discriminating against you because of your bankruptcy filing, first make sure there’s no other reason. It is hard to prove your debtor status was the only reason for your firing, especially if you had made other mistakes like showing up late or missing many days at work.
It is more difficult to prove that you were turned down for a government job because of your bankruptcy case, so always be sure to research first before assuming anything. Better yet, you can contact a bankruptcy lawyer to examine your case and decide if there’s evidence of wrongdoing.
Feel free to contact Gilbert Bankruptcy Lawyers to learn more about bankruptcy laws and employment. Our team has the best experience and knowledge to work on your case and give you the best solutions for any issues you have. Plus, we can help you get the debt-free lifestyle you deserve. Take a look at our website or call us to get a free consultation!