Lying on your resume: what are the risks of sanctions?
Have you ever lied on your resume? Like you, many people have been tempted to lie on their resume but have not. Why not? Simply because they know it’s risky. Contrary to what you may think, you risk penalties for lying on your resume. If the position in question is the job you’ve spent a long time looking for and finding, don’t make the mistake of missing out by lying on your resume. We have said enough in these few lines.
What are the risks of lying on your resume?
The notion of lying may not exist in the labor code. But contrary to what you may think, there are penalties to be incurred. Just keep in mind that today’s recruiters have different ways of verifying the truthfulness of the information you include in your resume. Either they call your former employers or your former institutions. A little lie that you think won’t affect your application can go a long way.
Beware if your employer did not notice anything during the interview. While you are on the job, you will be at risk of being fired and having your contract terminated all the time. Even worse, you risk being “blacklisted” from all the companies that are partnered with that company you lied for. And your entire career will be destroyed. All because of a lie that you consider “small”. On that note, if you don’t know how to hide the holes in your resume without lying, you can take inspiration from the professional resume examples and templates online.
Even if the law does not grant penal sanctions to lying on one’s CV, you should know that a candidate who presents a false diploma during the recruitment process can be prosecuted for the offence of forgery and use of forgeries. According to article 441-1, paragraph 2 of the French Penal Code, he/she is liable to 3 years of imprisonment and a fine of 45 000 €.
Can an employee who lied on his resume still be fired?
Yes, as mentioned above, if your employer doesn’t find out about your lie until after you’ve been hired, you could still be fired. In any case, everything must follow conditions. In the case of false information on the CV, which is considered to be fraudulent maneuvers aimed at deceiving the recruiter, article 1137 of the Civil Code states that “fraud is a cause of nullity of the agreement when the maneuvers used by one of the parties are such that it is obvious that, without these maneuvers, the other party would not have contracted. This means that an employee who has lied on his or her CV risks losing his or her job..
In any event, the lie in question must be serious enough, i.e., have been a determining factor in his hiring, to allow for this dismissal. This is, for example, the case of a sales manager who made it appear during his recruitment that he had previously worked in the same position in a competing company, when in fact he had not.
On the other hand, the dismissal is not valid if the litigious mention in the CV is only imprecise and susceptible to misinterpretation, such as a candidate who claims to have worked as an assistant to a training manager but who only had 4 months of experience as a training course. Under the law, this is not a fraudulent scheme. It’s just a little lie to improve a resume. And the information is not false but erroneous. The candidate did take the job but as an intern.
What the law says
Cheating on one’s background and/or credentials is quite common on a resume. But does the law really punish those people who lie on their resumes? According to the 1992 law, the employer has the right to verify the truthfulness of all the information included in a candidate’s CV by all possible means. If, on the contrary, he does not do so, he will be at fault in the eyes of the law.
However, as explained above, the level of sanctions attributed to the candidate concerned depends on the assessment of the lie and its impact on his or her hiring. It all depends on the employer. If the employer considers that the lie has had too much impact on the recruitment process of the candidate concerned, he can fire him. On the other hand, if the employer has no problem with the lie, he can continue to employ the candidate.
Also, cases are studied on a case by case basis before the Conseil de prud’hommes. In short, all this to convince you that good faith and honesty count a lot in the recruitment process. These are now highly sought after qualities by recruiters because they want to work not only with competent people but also with people who are trustworthy and who can assume all the responsibilities assigned to them. The ideal is to know how to put forward one’s strong points so as not to freeze the recruiter’s attention on one’s weak points and/or on the holes in one’s CV.
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