You may think that a past employer won’t give a negative reference, but unfortunately employers can — and do — give bad feedback. Think previous employers can’t legally give a negative reference or do more than confirm dates of employment? This is not true.


Unfortunately, employers can give negative references, even if you think they won’t. Many people believe that employers can only confirm dates of employment, but this is not the case.

Can my old employer give me a bad reference?

It is a common misconception that an employer is legally obligated to provide a reference, and furthermore, that they are prohibited from giving a bad one.
2. In reality, an employer can give a bad or unfavorable reference, but only if they genuinely believe it to be true and accurate, and have reasonable grounds for that belief.

What can go wrong during references?

Some examples of bad reference checks may include: Candidates who refuse to provide references. This can be a red flag, as it may indicate that the candidate is hiding something. References you can’t get ahold of. This can be frustrating, as you won’t be able to get a sense of the candidate’s work history or character. References who are fake. This is a major red flag, as it means the candidate is lying about their work history. Discrepancies in job history & experience. This can be a cause for concern, as it may indicate that the candidate is not being truthful about their qualifications. Listing professional vs personal references. This can be a good way to get a sense of the candidate’s character, but be sure to follow up with both types of references. References who worked with the candidate closely. These references can provide valuable insights into the candidate’s work ethic and abilities.

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Can I list references without telling them?

Do not list someone as a reference without asking them first. It is common courtesy to ask for permission before doing so.
2. Asking permission from the person you list to be your reference will prevent them from being caught off guard when they receive a call from someone unknown.
3. It may also hurt your application if you do not ask the person you are listing as a reference.
4. Therefore, it is best to ask for permission before listing someone as a reference.

Can a bad reference cost you a job?

A reference can show that you’re not suitable for a job if it’s fair and accurate.
2. For example, a reference can show you do not have enough experience for a job or say that you were dismissed.

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