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  • How many people has lost their job due to a background investigation?

    I was wondering how many people out there has lost their present jobs due to a background investigator coming to their work and poking around? Is there anyway around this? Kind of getting some heat at my new job, and the guy before me got fired because they found out he was looking elsewhere!

  • #2
    Originally posted by dotcomer View Post
    I was wondering how many people out there has lost their present jobs due to a background investigator coming to their work and poking around? Is there anyway around this? Kind of getting some heat at my new job, and the guy before me got fired because they found out he was looking elsewhere!
    1. It happens, but I don't think it is all that common. Do you live in an at-will state?

    2. No, they will come to your current place of employment and inquire about you.

    3. I don't know if I would want to work for anyone that tried to restrict my career advancement outside of going to competitors.
    Big Brother is watching

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    • #3
      Originally posted by dotcomer View Post
      I was wondering how many people out there has lost their present jobs due to a background investigator coming to their work and poking around? Is there anyway around this? Kind of getting some heat at my new job, and the guy before me got fired because they found out he was looking elsewhere!
      In your situation, I'd be more worried about your employer purposefully sabotaging your background investigation. After all, if they are cold enough to fire you just for looking at other jobs, they will probably try to discredit your reputation as well and screw you over at whatever police agency you are applying.

      Why not just tell them beforehand? I'm assuming that the field you currently work in is not related in any way to law enforcement. They aren't losing you to a competitor, and you aren't leaving out of spite, or with any negative intentions, so I don't see the problem.

      From your profile, it says you are a state investigator. I don't see the government of the state as the type of employer who fires people in the way you describe. People come and go all the time.
      What is Perseverance?
      -Perseverance is commitment, hard work, patience, endurance.
      -Perseverance is being able to bear difficulties calmly and without complaint.
      -PERSEVERANCE IS TRYING AGAIN AND AGAIN.


      BOP - BPA - ICE

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      • #4
        I do live in an at-will state.

        I was wondering if they come to your place of employment and specifically say "we are conducting a background investigation in regards to John Smiths application to the US Marshals or is it more generic?

        The reason I say that is because if they do not specifically say who they are conducting the background for I could tell my boss that I am wanting to do some reserve work on the weekends at the local SO and they will probably do a background on me. That way my boss is not worrying about me leaving and just think I want to serve my community but not leave my present place of employment.

        Trying to figure a way around this! Anyday now the BI is scheduled to come to my place of employment. My present employer does not know about my pursuits in the Federal Law Enforcement field and frankly I think its none of their business.

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        • #5
          I conduct background investigations, but I usually call ahead to make sure they are willing to do the interviews. My company which is a contractor to the US Govt. doesn't mind the career advancement, but I think they are frowning on my decision to leave. My team leader found out I was in the application process with the USSS through a coworker of mine, but he didn't seem to mind.
          USSS

          5/2009 - Applied
          7/2009 - TEA
          7/2009 - Initial Interview
          8/2009 - Conditional Offer and Submitted Forms
          10/2009 - Panel Interview
          12/22/2009 - Epic Failure

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          • #6
            Originally posted by dotcomer View Post
            I do live in an at-will state.

            I was wondering if they come to your place of employment and specifically say "we are conducting a background investigation in regards to John Smiths application to the US Marshals or is it more generic?

            The reason I say that is because if they do not specifically say who they are conducting the background for I could tell my boss that I am wanting to dome some reserve work on the weekends at the local SO and they will probably do a background on me. That way my boss is not worrying about me leaving and just think I want to serve my community but not leave my present place of employment.

            Trying to figure a way around this! Anyday now the BI is scheduled to come to my place of employment. My present employer does not know about my pursuits in the Federal Law Enforcement field and frankly I think its none of their business.
            There will be background investigators (the large majority of them, in fact) who will explain the purpose of their visiting the employer (i.e. "I am here to conduct a suitability determination for Applicant X in regards to their application with such-and-such agency), and others may choose to be less detailed as to why they are visiting an employer. The employer has the right to ask the investigator why the investigator is requesting information about one of their employees, and it is at this point that the investigators who choose to be less detailed in regards to why they are there, will offer up more details (i.e. the name of the company they work for, and the agency on whose behalf they are conducting the suitability determination).

            Since you work in an at-will state (and to be quite frank, all states are "at-will" because all states enforce the Doctrine of Employment at Will, the difference is that each states enforces the Doctrine to varying degrees) you may have to take a bite of the sh#t sandwich, and come clean as to who is about to be paying your employer a visit, as well as why they will be visiting.
            sigpicTwo is one,
            one is none.

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            • #7
              dotcomer,

              The purpose of the background investigation is to determine your suitability to hold a security clearance or to be placed in a position that may impact the national security and or the public's trust. One of the major components when looking at your background, is your honesty, integrity and trustworthines, which as a fraud investigator, you should know all about. So lying to your current employer, does not sound like the best idea nor is it a good way to get into any LE job. To answer your questions, as stated above "no" there is no way to get around the background investigation. It does suck that this can put your current employment in jeopardy, but is a chance you have to be willing to take. The Investigators that will conduct your background investigations, will present themselves as either a federal contract investigator or a special agent, so I don't think any good investigator would buy what you're trying to pull with the whole reseve work with the SO, just wouldn't make sense. My best advise is for you to be honest at all times and be careful with the information you post as you never know who is reading your posts. Good luck to you!

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Twoisone View Post
                There will be background investigators (the large majority of them, in fact) who will explain the purpose of their visiting the employer (i.e. "I am here to conduct a suitability determination for Applicant X in regards to their application with such-and-such agency), and others may choose to be less detailed as to why they are visiting an employer. The employer has the right to ask the investigator why the investigator is requesting information about one of their employees, and it is at this point that the investigators who choose to be less detailed in regards to why they are there, will offer up more details (i.e. the name of the company they work for, and the agency on whose behalf they are conducting the suitability determination).

                Since you work in an at-will state (and to be quite frank, all states are "at-will" because all states enforce the Doctrine of Employment at Will, the difference is that each states enforces the Doctrine to varying degrees) you may have to take a bite of the sh#t sandwich, and come clean as to who is about to be paying your employer a visit, as well as why they will be visiting.
                The part about all states being at will isn't totally correct. I have worked for State Agencies that couldn't fire you if they wanted to because we were covered under union protection. They had to give you three strikes, on three different occasions to apply for you to be fired then it went to arbitration between the state and the union. Once in arbitration the contract read if counseling was not provided before they had to offer you counseling and couldn't terminate you unless you broke the law in some fashion. The fourth offense the could apply for you to be terminated again but it went to arbitration once more which usually resulted in termination. Union jobs tend to offer the best protection against termination.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by AEF215 View Post
                  dotcomer,

                  The purpose of the background investigation is to determine your suitability to hold a security clearance or to be placed in a position that may impact the national security and or the public's trust. One of the major components when looking at your background, is your honesty, integrity and trustworthines, which as a fraud investigator, you should know all about. So lying to your current employer, does not sound like the best idea nor is it a good way to get into any LE job. To answer your questions, as stated above "no" there is no way to get around the background investigation. It does suck that this can put your current employment in jeopardy, but is a chance you have to be willing to take. The Investigators that will conduct your background investigations, will present themselves as either a federal contract investigator or a special agent, so I don't think any good investigator would buy what you're trying to pull with the whole reseve work with the SO, just wouldn't make sense. My best advise is for you to be honest at all times and be careful with the information you post as you never know who is reading your posts. Good luck to you!


                  I didnt lie on my background nor do I plan on lieing to the background investigator. I am trying to keep the job I have now for the time being until the class date comes into factor which can take some time from when your background is in concern. I understand what you say about posting on here but my background is clean as a whistle. The ONLY concern I have is getting fired from my present job because they found out I was looking elsewhere. I was curious about how the BI presents themselves to your present employer is all. If the interview is generic about my character, etc and they dont disclose that I am seeking employment within the Federal government then I am not to worried. But if the investigator says that they are there because my application with so and so agency then that pretty much gurantees my termination with my employer. That is what happened to the guy before me. I have talked to several people before taking this job I have now, and they said dont tell your new job about other pursuits because its not their business. Granted I have only had this new job for about two months now so i was dealing with this when I took this job. So I listened to my Special Agent friends and did not disclose my other pursuits. Now it's getting a little hairy.
                  Last edited by dotcomer; 10-28-2009, 02:16 PM.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by DDixon1000 View Post
                    The part about all states being at will isn't totally correct. I have worked for State Agencies that couldn't fire you if they wanted to because we were covered under union protection. They had to give you three strikes, on three different occasions to apply for you to be fired then it went to arbitration between the state and the union. Once in arbitration the contract read if counseling was not provided before they had to offer you counseling and couldn't terminate you unless you broke the law in some fashion. The fourth offense the could apply for you to be terminated again but it went to arbitration once more which usually resulted in termination. Union jobs tend to offer the best protection against termination.
                    All states are "at-will." The Doctrine is enforced by all states however, as I previously mentioned, the enforcement is done to varying degrees. The other caveat is that unless there is a some sort of employment contract (i.e. collective bargaining agreement or union contract), the Doctrine is used and enforceable in all states. From what you describe this is the case with the state agency you worked for, in that the union contract between the state and the union trumps the Doctrine. It does not mean the Doctrine is not used or enforceable in your state, it just means that the union agreement that is in place between the state agency and your union overrides the Doctrine. Unless the company the original poster works at has some type of employment contract that trumps the Doctrine, he/she will not have the same type of protections you have.

                    As well, union jobs do offer employees with far better protection than those who are not represented by a union. This protection may have some catches though, such as the case with some federal law enforcement positions, in that until an officer/agent successfully completes their probation term the government can terminate them (or more to the point, convert them to career-conditional status from excepted service status) without giving a reason (read: FCIP). The probation length can be one year, two years, or even three years depending on if the trainee has veteran's preference, prior qualifying government employment, or a combination of the two. As well, if the government moves to fire a trainee under FCIP, the preceeding items will come into play as far as what type of role their respective union will take in representing the trainee, and what (if any) MSPB rights will or will not be afforded to the trainee.
                    sigpicTwo is one,
                    one is none.

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                    • #11
                      My BI asked my Boss and co-workers (he randomly selected two). “So and so is seeking employment as a federal agent for the IRS. A position of public trust…….”

                      PS my boss is planning on laying me off in the new year. Budget cuts. He has to reduce his staff. Its really a no brainer.

                      I hope I get the final offer before my last day.

                      Originally posted by dotcomer View Post
                      I do live in an at-will state.

                      I was wondering if they come to your place of employment and specifically say "we are conducting a background investigation in regards to John Smiths application to the US Marshals or is it more generic?
                      "From now until the end of the world, we and it shall be remembered. We few, we Band of Brothers. For he who sheds his blood with me shall be my brother." - William Shakespeare ("King Henry V")

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I am in the same boat. Since my BI, I have been the odd man out. Everyone is treating me as if I'm not part of the "team" anymore. I don't get consideration for any of the jobs I did before the BI. All the haters have come out of the wood work. EVERY day I get "O, you still work here Marshal?" All the jokes from the "life'rs" at my department are getting really old. I'm just trying to fly under the radar and get through the next 6 months or so. It's much more stressful then ever, knowing that I need to make sure that everything I do is perfect in fear of being under the microscope. I wish I even had an idea of when I might be getting the "Call". At least it would keep my spirits high to help get through this.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I think this is a risk you take for any job. Yes, private sector jobs tend to give you the option of contacting your current employer but often if you are doing well at your current job you may want that reference.

                          Employers have to realize that not all their employees plan on spending their entire career with them anymore, current economic and employment trends show that most people today switch careers and jobs much more often than in years past for a variety of reasons. Increases in pay being one of the biggest.

                          I am in the same boat, granted I have not had a BI done yet, but I just accepted a job to get me by while I wait for the Feds.

                          To those that are in the uncomfortable position of having completed the BI and are now just waiting. Just know that you are on to better things and this too shall pass.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            But what worries me is, just because your BI is done does not guarantee you a position. They have budget cuts, etc that could hold you up. That is the down side.

                            To make a long story short I was in this predicament before. In 2007 I was in the process for the US Postal Inspection Service. They conducted my BI at my employer "at that time" and then came to a big hiring freeze. Low and behold 2 months later the company I worked for had so called "budget cuts" and laid me off. I heard through the grapevine that they in fact did NOT have budget cuts but felt as if I was a liability and did not want to dump any more money into me since I was leaving. The following week my old position was filled. HA- That was in 2007 and look at me now, sill clawing away for that Federal gig.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by dotcomer View Post
                              But what worries me is, just because your BI is done does not guarantee you a position. They have budget cuts, etc that could hold you up. That is the down side.

                              To make a long story short I was in this predicament before. In 2007 I was in the process for the US Postal Inspection Service. They conducted my BI at my employer "at that time" and then came to a big hiring freeze. Low and behold 2 months later the company I worked for had so called "budget cuts" and laid me off. I heard through the grapevine that they in fact did NOT have budget cuts but felt as if I was a liability and did not want to dump any more money into me since I was leaving. The following week my old position was filled. HA- That was in 2007 and look at me now, sill clawing away for that Federal gig.
                              Ahhh...OK, sorry I misinterpreted. Well, I guess in reality there is nothing you can do. You have to play the waiting game in regards to the Feds and while you are at it, you are at the mercy of your current employer. If you get fired (especially if they say it's due to "budget cuts") you can apply for unemployment benefits though. I know that may not be option one would want to consider nor may the money be enough to get you by but you pay for that in weekly paycheck.

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