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2 years ago I was caught for shop lifting at a retail store. Will this affect my chances of getting a job at a retail store?

Vallejo, CA |

It has been more than 2 years since the incident. The police were not involved. No picture was taken. I only signed an agreement stating that i was banned from entering the store fore 2 years.

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Attorney answers 2


If there is no public record in the form of a police report, charge or conviction, it is unlikely that a future employer would be able to discover this fact. Most background checks, assuming the employer will conduct one, only obtain information that is public so you should be in the clear, assuming you are not applying for the store from which you were caught shoplifting as they would obviously have a record of you on file.


Very possibly. Many major retailers participate in the operation of a private data base to which retailers add identifying info in matters of shoplifts and employee thefts. Members who provide data can run their employment applicants against the data bank and most will not offer employment where there is a match. Entry in the data bank is not limited or categorized by convictions, arrests, prosecutions or other formal law enforcement-related criteria. Entries are made based on informal and subjective criteria by member businesses.

Sometimes the paperwork that theft suspects are asked to sign at the time of detention (and release) include consent and or acknowledgement of the potential inclusion in the data bank. Law enforcement agencies are not involved in inputting info to the retailer data base, nor in retrieving information from it.

It can be very difficult to know whether you are on file in the retailer data base. When you are denied employment for that reason, the employer is not required to provide a statement of the reason and most will not do so.

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