What are my options for being sent home on first day of a job due to an old arrest?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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What are my options for being sent home on first day of a job due to an old arrest?

I accepted a job offer where the start date was pushed back 3 times while the background check cleared, which it finally did. Started my job and was finger printed on the first day. 4 hours later was sent home due to an arrest that came up which I forgot about from a few years ago. No crime committed and no conviction. Following day was asked to not return with no explanation of why. Do I have any rights here? or move on. Not that I would go back as this is now a sour relationship.

Asked on March 25, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, New Jersey


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, unless this violates a written employment contract for a set or defined period of time (e.g. a one-year contract starting on a certain date), you have no rights: without a contract, you are an employee at will, and an employee at will may be terminated at any time, for any reason, including the results of a criminal background check--even if all that come up was an arrest, without conviction.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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