Does UPS Run Background Checks?

The short answer to this question is yes, UPS runs background checks on all potential employees. However, this does not mean that someone with a felony or misdemeanor is automatically disqualified. If you’re interested in working at UPS, keep reading below for more details on their hiring process!

In the following paragraphs, we will answer the questions:

  • What is UPS?
  • What will UPS see on my background check? What do I do if I have a felony or misdemeanor?
  • How can I succeed in a UPS interview?

About UPS

UPS (the United Parcel Service) is a multinational company best known for package delivery. The UPS store also offers services like printing and shipping. A full list of the companies and services associated with UPS can be found on their website here.

If you are interested in working at UPS, there are many potential jobs within the company that you can apply for. You can find these on their job website. There are part-time, full-time, and seasonal positions. Many seasonal positions are filled around the holidays, when there is a bigger demand for package delivery services.

Some of the positions available with UPS include package handler, driver, warehouse staff, and technician. In these roles, you may be asked to perform a variety of tasks. For example:

As a package handler, you could be asked to:

  • Continually lift and lower packages
  • Lift up to 70lbs

As a driver, you could be asked to:

  • Possess a valid driver’s license
  • Drive a manual transmission (“stick shift”) vehicle
  • Engage in customer service interactions

As a member of the warehouse staff, you could be asked to:

  • Drive a forklift
  • Move and handle packages

If you have any of these skills, UPS might be a good fit for you! More detailed descriptions of these and other jobs can be found on the UPS website. The jobs they offer range from car washer to sales executive.

UPS Background Check

UPS performs a background check on all potential candidates. This background check is legal, and it might include information about any pending charges, felonies, incarcerations, or misdemeanors on your record. UPS will also check your driving record if you are applying for a driver position. They will probably also require a drug test.

UPS states in many of their job postings for driver positions that you must have “no at fault accidents within the last 3 years; no violations within the last 12 months.” However, they do not state their position on hiring felons anywhere on their website or in their FAQs. This means that their willingness to hire felons may vary based on location.

The background check that UPS runs will most likely be performed after you have interviewed with the company. However, this could depend on the state and city that you live in. If you live in an area which has passed Ban the Box legislation, UPS shouldn’t ask you about your criminal record while you are filling out an application. This includes the states of:

  • California
  • Connecticut
  • Hawaii
  • Illinois
  • Massachusetts
  • Minnesota
  • New Jersey
  • Oregon
  • Rhode Island
  • Vermont

If the job application form does ask you about felony convictions, read the question carefully. Sometimes it only asks about convictions within the past 5, 7, or 10 years. In this case, you don’t have to mention any felonies earlier than the application asks for.

UPS must ask you for your written consent before they run a background check, no matter where you live. They might ask for your consent during your interview or after your interview. This is legal, even if you live somewhere where they cannot ask about the details of your criminal record when you are applying. Be aware that UPS’s background check is in-depth. They need to be confident that their employees will not steal or be dishonest. After all, they handle many packages and shipments every day!

If you refuse a background check, UPS can decide not to hire you because of your refusal. Not consenting to a background check shows companies that you have something to hide. They might see you as dishonest or untrustworthy. It is best to agree to the background check.

Before UPS gets any information about your criminal history, you can see what might come up on your record. You can find your state’s official criminal background check website here. The cost of a background check varies by state.

If you find information on your record that is incorrect, you can correct it before you apply, so that all your information is up-to-date. For example, if you were charged with a felony but convicted of a misdemeanor, you should make sure that your report shows just the misdemeanor! To fix mistakes on your criminal record, you might need to submit a form online or in the mail, have your fingerprints taken, or file a motion for a judge to make the correction. The process depends on your state and the kind of problem that you need fixed. Use a simple google search to research how to correct your criminal record in your specific state. This can help you find instructions or a phone number to call for more information.

If you can get an arrest or conviction expunged from your record, you don’t need to tell any potential employer about it. It also won’t show up on a background check. Expunging a record is possible depending on the type of felony or misdemeanor and also depending on where you live. This website has more information about the process.

States that currently support expungement are:

  • Arizona
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Florida
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Kentucky
  • Missouri
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Oregon
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Washington

If you make changes to your record, make sure you know what those changes are. Get documentation to prove that they are legitimate so that you can show them to someone at UPS if they have any questions.

All employers are also prohibited from discriminating against you based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. This means that UPS can’t treat you differently from another applicant with the same criminal background because of your race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.

How can I succeed in a UPS interview?

Remember that honesty is important. If you are asked about a felony or misdemeanor during an interview, do not lie about it. While a felony may be a barrier to employment, being honest will demonstrate your ability to be fair, honest, and ethical. These are values that UPS names in their Code of Business Conduct. Because UPS does not state an official stance on hiring felons, a good interview could land you a job at the company. If you are asked about your record, take the opportunity to quickly explain it. Then emphasize how much you want to work hard and move on from your past mistakes.

In order to showcase your best qualities and what you would bring to UPS, make sure to prepare for your interview. While you are preparing, think about:

  • What makes you a good candidate for this job?
  • Are you in good physical condition? Can you handle the hard labor involved in a package handling job?
  • Have you ever had a similar job? What relevant experience will help you do well at UPS?
  • What do you know about UPS? Why do you want to work there?
  • Why should UPS choose you instead of another applicant?

Even if it’s not your dream job, showing enthusiasm and interest can help you succeed in an interview. To show your professionalism, you can arrive early to your interview, dress formally, and prepare a copy of your resume. UPS hires based on each individual and has no blanket policy against hiring felons. Your interview and resume can be the “make or break” factors in your job search.

Many colleges offer free information about resumes, such as these tips from the University of Georgia. There are also many resources online. Try out this database of example resumes from Some websites offer templates that you can fill out with your information. For example, and Google docs have free templates. You can also visit the H.I.R.E. Network’s website for more state-specific guides and resources to help you prepare. Use these resources to help you put your best foot forward!

After your interview, send an email to thank your interviewer. If you discussed your criminal record during your interview, you can use this email to tell them about the Work Opportunity Tax Credit and the Federal Bonding Program. These are federal programs that give benefits and support to employers who hire felons.

UPS states on their website that “most UPS associates and managers begin their career as Part-time Package Handlers or seasonal Driver Helpers.” An initial job at UPS could lead to a long-term career. UPS offers full-time employees (and part-time employees who have been working with them for more than one year) benefits like health insurance. Understand how a background check will be used in your application process, prepare to tell your story, and present yourself in a professional and optimistic way, and a job with UPS could become your long-term career!

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