You were convicted of a felony, have completed probation successfully, and went back to court for a dismissal. The court agreed to reduce your conviction to a misdemeanor and dismissed the charges under California Penal Code section 1203.4. Now what?
Can you answer “no” to the question of whether you have ever been convicted of a felony in a job application?
Maybe. It depends.
California Labor Code section 432.7 specifically states that employers “shall not ask” applicants to disclose a conviction that has been “judicially dismissed” pursuant to law, including Penal Code section 1203.4. In addition, the employer is prohibited from obtaining information “as a factor in determining any condition of employment including hiring, promotion, termination” any public records of arrest, detention, or a “conviction that has been judicially dismissed . . . pursuant to . . . Sections 1203.4, 1203.4a, 1203.45, and 1210.1 of the Penal Code.”
Of course, there are many exceptions to this section. Exceptions include seeking employment or already employed as:
Peace Officers, positions with the Department of Justice, or other criminal justice agencies;
Employers at health facilities can ask applicants for positions with regular access to patients about arrests for sex offenses listed in Penal Code section 290;
Employers at health facilities can ask applicants for positions with access to drugs or medications about arrests for offenses specified in Health and Safety Code section 11590;
Employers who are required by law to obtain this information (See United States Code Title 12, Section 1829);
Applicants who would be required to possess or use a firearm during employment;
Applicants who cannot hold specific positions even though the conviction has been expunged;
Employers prohibited by law from hiring an applicant who was convicted of a crime;
Retail pharmacies that can ask applicants for employment whether they have been convicted of any crime involving controlled substances (United States Code Title 21, Section 830(e)(1)(G)).
Knowing which specific offenses are subject to dismissal under Penal Code section 1203.4 is critical to consider when resolving criminal charges with a plea of guilty or no contest. Long term consequences of a plea to charges that cannot be dismissed with PC 1203.4 will impact your job opportunities for the rest of your life. Make sure you understand all the consequences of a plea bargain before entering a plea to resolve your case.
If you are looking for an experienced, reliable criminal defense attorney who understands the consequences of resolving a case while considering the long term consequences of a plea bargain, and can provide the best defense available, schedule an appointment on this web site or call to set up a time to meet and discuss your case.