Criminal Record And Employment: 5 Things To Know.
In France, the automated national criminal record is a computer file used to keep track of criminal convictions and other judicial decisions. As part of a hiring process, checking a candidate's criminal background is only allowed under certain conditions. Here are 5 things to know about the impact of a criminal record on a person's employment.
"What is a criminal record extract?"
As part of a hiring process, it may happen that your future employer asks for a criminal record extract.
In reality, there are three forms of criminal record extracts also called bulletins:
• bulletin number 1 contains all convictions and decisions recorded in an individual's criminal record.
• bulletin number 2 lists the convictions contained in bulletin n°1, except for convictions applied to minors (up to 2 months imprisonment), foreign court decisions, fines and suspended sentences that have not been revoked.
• bulletin number 3 exclusively mentions convictions for crimes or offenses with a prison sentence of more than 2 years without any suspension, as well as prison sentences of less than 2 years if the court has required their mention in bulletin n°3.
2- In what case can the employer ask you for this document?
A clean criminal record may first be required to access a public job. In this case, the required document is the "bulletin n°2".
A future employer may also verify a candidate's criminal background by asking for an extract of their record, provided that this request is justified.
The Labor Code stipulates that the information requested by the employer must be directly related to the proposed position. For example, this document is necessary when a candidate applies for a regulated profession such as a cash transporter, security agent or airport agent.
Before providing this document, always check that this request is justified by the characteristics of your future job.
Also note that an employer cannot refuse to hire you because of your criminal record unless the convictions listed in your record are incompatible with the job you are applying for.
3- Who can access your criminal record?
Although in some cases an employer may legitimately ask you to provide a criminal record extract (usually bulletin number 2), it should be noted that the employer does not have the right to directly access a candidate's criminal record for hiring purposes.
As the information contained in this document is strictly personal, this type of extract can only be issued to the person concerned or their legal representative.
Is the confidentiality of information protected?
French law protects personal information contained in a criminal record extract. Therefore, when you provide an extract of your criminal record to an employer for employment purposes, they generally do not have the right to keep the document you give them.
For certain sensitive positions, the employer has the right to check the B2 or B3 records of future employees and may be required to keep the criminal record extract for a certain period of time (this period is 3 months for access to a job in administration).
In the absence of specific legislation, this document should not be kept. Additionally, the employer does not have the right to make a copy during the job interview.
Remember that the information contained in this document is strictly personal and the employer cannot do anything they want with this type of document.
5- Can certain offenses be erased from one's criminal record?
As a general rule, citizens with a clean record have a better chance of being hired than those with a criminal history. Although this type of discrimination is theoretically prohibited by the Labor Code, it may be useful to have one's criminal record cleared before applying for certain jobs to increase one's chances. A citizen who has been convicted can indeed request that the prosecutor's office erase the conviction after a certain period of time. The removal by the court of convictions appearing in bulletin n°2 is called "judicial rehabilitation". It can only be requested after a variable period of time:
- 1 year for a conviction for a contraventional sentence
- 3 years for a conviction for a correctional sentence
- 5 years for a conviction for a criminal sentence.
However, this erasure is not possible in cases of serious crimes such as murder, sexual assault or rape, as well as pimping of a minor.