Ban-the-Box

New Career Licensure Opportunities May Soon Be Available to Delaware Residents Under Newly Passed “Ban-the-Box” Bill

Delaware residents with a criminal history may soon have new career opportunities, many of which are in high-demand fields. These opportunities are available by obtaining career licensures. Delaware lawmakers have passed a bill that would remove the criminal history restrictions on many career licensures, which currently deny applicants with a criminal history.

The bill specifies certain types of criminal history that licensing boards will be instructed not to consider. These include juvenile records, charges that did not result in a conviction, pending charges, records for convictions that were sealed, pardoned or expunged, and records for convictions over ten years old. However, the bill does contain an exception to the ten-year limit for convictions of sexual offenses.

If you were previously interested in obtaining career licensure but stopped due to your criminal record, you may soon have a better opportunity to get a license. In addition to no longer considering certain criminal history, the licensing board must consider various factors when deciding whether to grant a license or give a waiver.

The bill also includes a process for individuals to determine whether their criminal history disqualifies them from obtaining specific licenses from the Division of Professional Regulation. Suppose the division or board does decide to disqualify someone from obtaining a license. In that case, it must supply the person with a written statement and provide the chance to submit rebuttal materials. If denied, you will have an opportunity to explain anything done to rehabilitate and why you should still receive the license.

The current laws often keep people with criminal records out of several fields in high demand. Passing this new bill will provide equal opportunity for these people and ease the labor shortage in many high-demand areas.

Though the restrictions on obtaining career licensures are less stringent, several limitations remain strict. For example, there can be restrictions placed on licensure for sex crimes. In addition, suppose an individual convicted of a crime related to finance sought another career licensure. In that case, the division can consider whether the conviction affects the person’s ability to be trusted with the necessary responsibilities in many fields.

Regardless of these restrictions, the governor signing this bill into law will provide many new opportunities for those with a criminal record. Remember to prepare for these changes before applying for career licensures by running a self-background check. Looking over the report ahead of time will help you prepare for any questions or concerns the Board or Division may have when they run the background check. You will also have the opportunity to correct errors in your report and ensure they don’t delay your opportunities.

Prepare for career opportunities by running a Self Background Check today.

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