Being a commercial truck driver is the first choice that comes into the mind of an ex-con. Most job opportunities close for a felon after their release.
In such a case, a felon merely has a few opportunities that he can count on. Companies train thousands of felons each year and make them commercial truck drivers.
The past criminal record however of a felon doesn’t affect the career of an ex-offender as a truck driver. When hiring a felon, the trucking company focuses on the person’s driving capabilities and experience level.
The major factor that refrains trucking companies from hiring felons as truck drivers are insurance issues. Before sending a truck for commercial purposes, the trucking company needs to pay for the insurance of the truck and everything associated with the truck.
If the company hires someone with a previous felony conviction, the company has to pay more money to insure the truck and everything related to it. That insurance includes the driver and the freight as well.
Getting insurance for a truck becomes harder for the company if the driver holds past criminal records. For this specific reason, several trucking companies don’t consider the applications of felons for commercial truck drivers.
There are some factors that every trucking company emphasizes before hiring a felon as a truck driver post. Let’s check the eligibility criteria a felon should meet before getting a job as a truck driver in a trucking company.
Eligibility Factors For A Felon To Become A Commercial Truck Driver
- Though there are trucking companies that hire inexperienced commercial truck drivers, most companies prefer hiring felons who have previous driving experience. Your chances of getting the job will increase if you have experience.
- You can’t become a commercial driver unless you’re a graduate in commercial driving from an authorized driving school. This is a mandatory requirement that you can’t overlook if you’re looking to be a commercial truck driver.
- Those who have already been involved in accidents or are accused of driving convictions won’t be able to pursue their careers as commercial drivers. Probably all countries have the same rule in this particular aspect. If you are already convicted of an accident or transportation-related crime, you should give up becoming a commercial driver again.
- Felons with prolonged imprisonment periods are less likely to get hired as commercial truck drivers. The chances are comparatively higher for felons with short imprisonment spans.
- If you are a felon and you want to be a commercial truck driver, you should have a clean slate as a driver. This is what a commercial trucking company asks for before they hire you as a driver.
You should always remember that not all offenders are eligible to get jobs with trucking companies. Felons with serious criminal charges won’t be considered ideal drivers for any trucking company, and more or less, all the trucking companies overlook such candidates.
Such candidates don’t even get commercial driving licenses from the government to become commercial truck drivers.
Recognized Companies That Hire Felons As Truck Drivers
1 Swift Transportation
This is one of the leading trucking companies of North America that hire thousands of felons as truck drivers every year.
A felon however can get a job as a driver in this company only if his crime has crossed ten years. This company executes a case-by-case method in terms of hiring felons as commercial truck drivers.
For security purposes, the Swift Transportation authority runs in-depth background checks on felons before hiring them. Apart from that, every felon needs to go through a drug test before being a part of this famous transportation company.
2 C.R. England
C.R. England is a trustworthy name in the field of transportation, and this company has been securing a top position in the transportation industry for a long. Though this company gives job opportunities to felons, they are pretty conscious and skeptical in terms of hiring them.
According to their hiring policy, you can only get a chance if your crime is more than ten years old. The company verifies your documents and identity via dedicated background checks. You’ll also have to undergo a drug test before you join the company as a truck driver.
Being a big name in the transportation industry of the United States, UPS hires numerous international, local, and regional drivers every year. UPS is famous for hiring felons, and the hiring processes entirely depend on the in-house HR team.
As per the latest reports, the company analyses the criminal record that a felon possesses before employing him. Similar to other trucking companies, UPS also conducts background checks and drug tests of candidates.
4 Cardinal Logistics
Cardinal Logistics has justified its reputation in the market over the years, and they hire felons as a truck driver as per the requirements. The company is quite strict in terms of selecting the right candidates among the felon applicants.
Cardinal Logistics investigates the records of each candidate before hiring. The best thing about this company is that it hires recent felons as well. When hiring a felon, this company focuses on the type of criminal charge that the candidate holds.
5 Knight Transportation
Knight Transportation is an established US-based truckload company that has extended its business in Mexico and Canada as well. A felon can apply for the driver position in this company if the convictions have crossed seven years.
The company asks for supportive documents as proof of your driving experience and background before you start working for them. This company also enquires about the records of the past three years of a felon before offering him the position of a driver.
6 Prime INC.
Prime INC. is another well-known company when it comes to intermodal transportation. This company takes felon candidates into considerations while hiring drivers.
Being one of the largest companies in North America, this company is a great address for thousands of felon drivers who are seeking jobs.
You’re eligible for working in this company unless you’re involved in a serious crime within three-four years before applying.
7 Werner Enterprises
This truckload company also offers opportunities to felon drivers from different states of the United States. Since this company functions as interstate and international truckload company, they hire both local and international drivers.
To apply for the driver position in this company, you have to appear for Indeed assessments where you’re supposed to fill in your details. The HR department of this company shortlists and hires felon drivers who complete the Indeed assessment set by them.
8 Schneider National
Almost everyone is familiar with the name of Schneider National. They have a wide number of efficient drivers employed.
If you’re a felon and you love driving, apply for a driver position in this company. You can submit an online application through their official website along with other relevant documents.
Being an international company, Schneider National verifies the criminal records of each felon before hiring. Their hiring process includes mandatory drug tests and background checks. They follow the government-aided guidelines strictly in this case.
Better Career Opportunities
Felons used to face hurdles while finding jobs as truck drivers just a few years ago. The scenario changed a lot over time. Today, a felon can become a professional commercial truck driver without too much stress by keeping some points in mind.
Here are a few points that increase the chances of a felon becoming a commercial driver
- You will be given priority in terms of selection if you possess previous experience as a commercial truck driving.
- No trucking company asks for CDL certificates from candidates directly. Candidates however having CDL experience certificates have a good chance of getting hired.
- You’ll be in a better position if you don’t have any raps in your driving career. Any conviction related to a traffic violation or other driving aspects can lessen your chances of getting hired drastically.
- You cannot overlook your personality traits while seeking a driver’s job in a reputed company. Most companies look at records and personal backgrounds. You should possess a good and attractive personality to get a job easily.
Though most companies prefer hiring experienced drivers for commercial driver positions, some companies give opportunities to felons with no experience as well. These companies have training programs for felons who don’t have previous experience in driving.
The following companies are great options for the felons who are looking forward to becoming commercial drivers but have no experience.
This company is famous for its hiring and training procedure that is dedicated to new drivers. When it comes to the transportation and truckload industry in the United States, the name of Celadon crops up.
The company takes felons with no experience through a strict and intense selection process. This includes thorough background checks, drug tests, and other screening processes.
After your release from prison, you can immediately apply for the position of a driver in this company and join the training program.
Being a multinational trucking company, Hirschbach offers the best-in-class training infrastructure to trainee drivers. You’ll however need at least six months of experience to be a trainee driver in this company.
The specialty of the company is that it also hires felons who are interested in pursuing careers in the transportation industry. The efficient on-job training campaign of this company helps felons with no experience in becoming professional truck drivers.
3 Tyson Foods
Tyson Foods is another organization where felons with no experience can get chances to learn and earn simultaneously. They also hire felons who have been released from prison recently and train them. This company monitors each felon’s application according to the government guidelines.
Based on the type of offense the felon had committed, the company selects and appoints a candidate. The dedicated hiring team of the company also cross-examines the criminal history and background records of each felon before hiring.
These are the major trucking companies that train felons with no experience to turn them into professional truck drivers. Apart from these, there are a few other companies that offer the same benefits to such felons.
Criminal Charges That Decrease The Felons Chances Of Getting A Job
- If you’re accused of violence and committing a serious crime like murder, you are not eligible to get a job as a truck driver. Unless a trucking company is assured of your reliability, they are less likely to hire someone like you.
- A long gap in your career can be a major drawback in terms of securing a truck driver’s job. No matter what the reason behind the gap in your driving career, the hiring company will consider it as a negative point.
- Several trucking companies hire felons who have been clean for around seven to ten years after committing crimes. Such companies refrain from hiring individuals who have been convicted of certain crimes recently. You must pass a certain period after release from prison for the companies to hire you.
- If you’ve been associated with an accident, traffic violation, or a crime related to transportation, the chances of getting a truck driver job are slightly difficult for you.
- Don’t expect to get a truck driver job unless you don’t have a valid and government-registered license. Consider renewing your commercial driving license to get a job as a commercial truck driver.
These are all the relevant factors that are related to felons and driving jobs. If you’re a felon and looking for a driving job, this article is a must-read for you.
Follow the above-mentioned instructions to secure a stable truck driving job for you. You can choose from the list of trucking companies and apply for the driver position on their website.
All these companies have positions for felons. Just make sure you match all the criteria to become a commercial truck driver, and nothing can get in the way of you getting a driving job. There are plenty of opportunities for a felon out there. You need to keep your eyes open and look at these opportunities. Getting your life on track after release is no longer difficult.