|Updated: 4/11/2007 10:26 am
||Published: 4/11/2007 10:26 am
It's common knowledge that job applicants sometimes embellish information on their resumes in order to land a job. Technically, resumes are not legal documents, so there's not much an employer can do if you lie, except decline to hire you. However, job applications are considered legal documents, and if you lie on them, your employer has the right to fire you, even if you've performed well on your job. Basically, if company policy calls for termination whenever application falsification is discovered, there's not much that guilty employees can do to keep their job. Furthermore, as long as the termination is not used as an excuse for firing an employee discriminatorily and doesn't breach an employment contract where oral or written assurances of job security are made, employees who misrepresent themselves on applications generally can't retaliate by filing a lawsuit for wrongful termination or discrimination. There may be times, however, when applicants genuinely forget information such as the exact dates of a previous employment. Employers may be better off overlooking unintentional mistakes, especially if the inaccurate information provided is not related to job performance or duties. Employers may save themselves the task of firing employees who've intentionally misrepresented themselves on job applications by conducting thorough background and reference checks during the hiring process.