Will prospective employers look at credit scores and/or other financial information and if so, how much weight will they give it (especially in this economy)?
I know this comes up for certain types of employers (financial services firms, accounting firms, banks, and often the federal government) of for certain types of jobs (especially ones in which you need to handle other people’s money, like accounting or finance, credit counseling, etc.). Probably, if you have a very difficult financial situation or credit score, it could actually stop you from getting hired for certain specific jobs.
However, in the majority of cases, employers won’t check your credit at all. If they do, you should be honest with them and provide information on any extenuating circumstances (divorce, foreclosure etc.) and provide any evidence that you have been doing whatever you can to find a way to meet your obligations. Also make the case that your personal financial situation is not going to affect your work, and that it doesn’t reflect on your level of responsibility in general. The more you can emphasize your strengths and how you are working to overcome adversity, the better.
Through my own experience and my friends, I believe credit checks are more common than we realize. Of course, this just may be due to the fields that we’re in. I wrote an article regarding this topic as well. It answers, “Can Employers Check Your Employment History.