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Accounting Career After Bankruptcy

by Betsy Gallup

When your financial circumstances turn from bad to worse, you might decide bankruptcy is the best option for regaining control of your life. Before you file that petition for bankruptcy, consider how your actions may affect your accounting career.

Current Job Impact

Legally, an employer cannot fire or demote you for declaring bankruptcy, or alter your job responsibilities. If you are a Certified Public Accountant, your bankruptcy will not affect your certification. However, if the employer becomes aware of your bankruptcy through a payroll garnishment or because you volunteer the information, your employer might be concerned that the inability to control your personal finances might bleed into your ability to provide effective accounting services. The employer might also consider your bankruptcy as an excuse to promote someone else with a more stable personal financial history.

Bankruptcy and Job Search

While accounting job applicants are not required to disclose a bankruptcy, many employers run a credit or background check. If the bankruptcy shows up during this investigation, the company may choose to hire someone else, particular if you are applying for a higher level accounting position where you would be making important financial decisions for the company or its clients.

Turn it Around

While a bankruptcy can curtail your accounting career temporarily, a bankruptcy only stays on your record for a certain number of years. You can use that time to rebuild your financial history and show future employers that you can apply your accounting expertise to your personal life experiences.

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