Workplace Background checks and self-employment

Mar 10, 2007
6,250
2,589
USA
I just wanted some folks to be aware that the background check I just underwent red flagged self-employment/consulting. They highly recommended the potential employer ask for documentation of self-employment, such as W-2s. This was somewhat of a problem for me because clients would just write a check and I would pay estimated quarterly taxes on the income. I don't really have "formal" documentation per se, and they weren't really interested in contract copies for some reason.

They ended up accepting some other, more informal documentation, such as business cards or invoices. So if you are working for yourself or are unemployed and then go to work for someone else, I would expect that the days of "oh, I'm not unemployed, I'm consulting" are closing...you'll have to prove it. :huh:

Some of it might be that my new employer gets Federal dollars and they are a little more strict, but since this is a contracted background check company I could see them doing this as par for the course for clients.
 

redney

Lovin' Life!
O.G.
Apr 21, 2006
14,062
5,536
But a former client wouldn't issue a W-2 to an independent contractor since they are not on the client's payroll. There could be a 1099.
 
Mar 10, 2007
6,250
2,589
USA
But a former client wouldn't issue a W-2 to an independent contractor since they are not on the client's payroll. There could be a 1099.
I know. I don't think HR knew what to ask for. So I sent some 'soft' things like a website archive link and an invoice.
 

Sweet Fire

Beauty & Class Unite
Oct 13, 2012
2,401
250
On the water
This is true. Anything you put as "employed" has to be able to show proof through W-2 or paystub. If you were contracted or got paid "under the table" do not list that as "employement" or there's a good chance you will not pass the background check. Background checking companies are required to check everything you put as employment and if they can't verify it, they will contact you to provide a check stub or W-2 showing proof of employment and employment dates. If you can't provide those things, you will not pass the background check and you won't get hired.