"If I have a felony on my record, can I get a contractor license?"
Everyone deserves a second chance. If you are looking to get a contractor license with a felony, here's what to expect.
State-Specific Rules on Contractor Licensing with a Felony
From the Licensing FAQs, “A prison record does not necessarily mean you cannot get a license. However, there are certain felony convictions that may prevent you from getting a license. Each case is reviewed on an individual basis.”
From Licensing Background Checks, “Not all criminal convictions will cause an application or renewal to be denied. Criminal convictions are reviewed to determine if the crime is substantially related to the duties, qualifications, and/or functions of a contractor.”
From Notice Regarding Background Checks, “Just because you have been convicted of a crime does not automatically mean your application will be denied. When reviewing prior criminal convictions, the NSCB considers such additional factors as the seriousness of the crime, the time that has passed since the conviction and any evidence of rehabilitation the applicant submits. However, if you misrepresent, omit, or lie on your application, your application may be denied.”
From the government website, “All convictions must be reported, even criminal convictions. If you have a felony conviction, you will not receive a license in Michigan, even if you are licensed in another state.”
Getting a Contractor License With a Felony
If you have a record, you will likely be required to complete a Criminal Disclosure Statement in your license application. The Criminal Disclosure Statement will require you to list information such as the arresting agency, the date of the conviction, the sentence, and an explanation of what happened.
Felony charges are evaluated carefully, case by case and state by state. Getting approved for a license largely depends on the type of conviction and how long ago the conviction took place.
Some states may issue you a Probationary License with a conviction.
The best way to find out if you can get a license is to call your state’s licensing board and ask, or simply apply for a license and see.