Can A Convicted Felon Become A Firefighter?

I have a 1st degree felony on my record since 2005. I want to be a fireman will it effect me or will I be ok?

That’s a tough one to answer. First, let me say that I am not aware of any state laws that would prohibit you from becoming a firefighter. The reality, however, is a bit more difficult than that.

If you were applying for a paid position as a fireman, you’re probably going to have a difficult time. Because it is a paid position, you’re naturally going to have lots of applicants. In order for you to be selected over any of the others, you’re going to have to bring something to the table that no one else has.

Think about it like this: if there are 50 people applying for the position and all have pretty much the same qualifications as you, why would they pick you (the guy with the felony) over any of the others?

In general, you’ll have a better chance the longer it has been since you committed the felony, especially if you have kept your nose clean since then.

If you have the option, I’d recommend trying to start out as a volunteer firefighter. Because there is no pay, you’ll be competing against a lot fewer applicants. This is also a great way to build experience, make some friends who are also firefighters, and get your foot in the door.

Good luck.