Can bad debt prevent you from getting the job of your dreams?

Author: Brian Weaver

Many people worry about how they are perceived when they have incurred bad debt. It is an unfortunate circumstance if bad debt has been caused by circumstances where sickness, family changes or severed income has been experienced. So, what does one do when trying to get out of bad debt and gain a dream job if an opportunity arises? Here a few tips worth considering.

  1. The first step is to check your credit report. Is it accurate? If not, make the appropriate steps to insure the information is up-to-date and that it reflects where you are currently positioned. The best way is to do a review independently to monitor your credit status.
  2. Be aware that employers are looking for candidates that are trustworthy and reliable. This is what you must demonstrate. If there are questions concerning your bad debt, explain clearly how it came about and that your dream job is your potential solution to clearing the bad debt. Employers regard missing payments or overdue payments as a lack of discipline. Sometimes this is unavoidable, and if it happens, explain why.   
  3. Companies can get worried if someone has incurred huge debts as they feel it can cause distraction and may provide the temptation to commit fraud or theft. Be clear to your potential employer that you have everything under control and clearly demonstrate an honest history in your communications. Letters from past employers can be useful here.
  4. Before any communications with a potential employer, be aware of what is on your credit report because you may still have the potential to get the job despite apparent negative information concerning your financial status. Issues can be addressed with your employer before they look at your credit.
  5. The downside of having a low credit score is paying high interest rates for loans. This means that your income can be compromised because of high debt costs. Employers may reduce their offers because of high debt combined with low credit scores.
  6. Be conscious of how your reputation may look to those that are meeting you for the first time. A good reputation can cross many bridges. So having regular payments, letters of support from previous employers, a solid history of turning up on time for work and following through on tasks is the way you can turn your situation around. This all shows that you are reliable and committed to achieving your dreams.


Many employers are aware that circumstances can happen in people’s lives that are outside of their control. Provided that you clearly communicate to your perspective employer when such questions are raised concerning your situation, you should have a great chance of succeeding. If an employer refuses to hire you based on your credit, he/she must issue a ‘pre-adverse action disclosure’ which includes a copy of your credit report that was used to make the decision. So, the advice is to keep a close eye on your credit report. Companies like VeriScreen can offer much valued insight here.