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Benefits for Employers

Working with Defendants/Offenders: 

Helping someone get back on their feet can be gratifying as well as beneficial to your business.  Here, you can learn about programs and incentives that help both ex-offenders and the businesses that hire them.  If you are a defendant, offender, or ex-offender, use this information to sell yourself to a potential employer.

While incarcerated, many ex-offenders received training and employment opportunities that helped them build occupational and work-readiness skills.

In addition, some ex-offenders have valuable, hard-to-find technical skills, like welding and machining.  And, many are willing to start in minimum wage jobs that offer a future.

Incentives for hiring ex-offenders: 

The U.S. Department Labor (DOL) and related agencies offer two major types of incentives for employers: bonding programs and tax incentives.

DOL’s Federal Bonding Program provides fidelity bonds to employers hiring at-risk individuals at no cost to the employer.  The bonds guarantee honesty for “at-risk,” hard-to-place job seekers and cover the first six months of employment.  Of over 40,000 bonds issued nationally, only 1% have had claims filed against them.  To determine your eligibility, contact your state’s bonding coordinator.

UNICOR’s Federal Bonding Program is available for eligible ex-offenders who participated in UNICOR employment while incarcerated. UNICOR employment allows inmates to work while incarcerated, producing goods and services for sale to the federal government.

Employers who hire people with felony convictions can benefit through The Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC). The credit allows eligible employers to reduce their federal tax liability by up to $9,600 per new hire.  The credit applies to temporary, seasonal, or part-time and full-time workers.