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Joseph, Lawyer
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 5299
Experience:  Extensive experience representing employees and management
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Can someone be employed at a private school with a felony conviction? Felony is 16 years

Customer Question

Can someone be employed at a private school with a felony conviction? Felony is 16 years old and employee has been working at private school for 7 years. Is the discovery of the felony grounds for termination as a matter of law?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: California Employment Law
Expert:  Joseph replied 4 years ago.
Hello and welcome to JustAnswer

I'm sorry to hear about your situation and hope I can help.

My goal is to provide you with excellent service today.

I need a bit more information from you before I can proceed to provide you with a complete and thorough answer to your question.

Does the employee have an employment contract with the employee, or is he an at-will employee?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Employee is "at will" employee and has been working at the school for seven years. His record has been flawless, thus far. The school was aware of the felony when he was originally hired. The felony is arson; he started a fire in a trash can. The DA talked him into agreeing to the felony in exchange for his release and credit for time served ( two weeks). He did not have the money for bail or an attorney and was given a PD. Again, what I am specifically interested in is whether there is a law that prohibits a private school (is there a distinction between public and private) from employing anyone with a felony.

Expert:  Joseph replied 4 years ago.
No, there is no such law that prohibits a private school from hiring someone with a felony. So, the discovery of the felony certainly doesn't force the private school to terminate the employee.

Unfortunately, as an at-will employee, the employee can be terminated at any time for any reason with or without any prior notice.

This stems from the employment at-will doctrine, which is codified in California Labor Code Section 2922 and states:

"An employment, having no specified term, may be terminated at
the will of either party on notice to the other. Employment for a
specified term means an employment for a period greater than one

So, while there is nothing in the law that prevents a private school from employing someone with a felony, the school is free to terminate the employee based on the discovery of the felony. (Since the employer can terminate the employee for any reason).

I realize the above information is not what you wanted to hear and I sincerely wish I had better news to give you, but I hope you appreciate an honest and direct answer to your question. It would be unprofessional of me and unfair to you to provide you with anything less.

Please let me know if you have any follow up or clarifying questions as I want to ensure that you are completely satisfied with my service.

If not, please remember to rate my answer positively so I get paid for my work.

Thanks and best of luck!