Fake Resume: Is Lying On Your Resume Ever A Good Idea?

handing over fake resume

When you’re desperate to get a new job or to get a better job, then you may start to think about how much easier it would be if your resume was better.

And we all know the saying – Desperate Times Call for Desperate Measures.

But you should really think twice before you start creating a fake resume. And I am saying this as someone who did this in the past, with negative consequences.

My Experience Sending Out A Fake Resume

When I was younger, I bounced around from job to job, so my actual resume would have been several pages long. If I’d been truthful with my experience.

But when you have a lot of jobs in a short amount of time, no one wants to hire you. And rightly so, cause they know you probably won’t stick around too long.

So, I thought, hey, maybe I should just embellish a bit.

That’s how it started. I decided to make my length of employment longer and it was – and my job title a more important one.

You see, I knew someone who was a manager who’d agreed to lie for me, so I thought it was a foolproof plan.

Well, that blew up in my face when the place I was interviewing at called the HR office instead of the manager whose direct number I’d given them.

But that wasn’t enough to make me stop creating fake resumes. My problem was that I started creating fake resumes for each job I applied to.

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Then, a few months into my job hunt I got called to interview at a place that I was really interested in working at as they were a major employer with awesome benefits.

I showed up with a copy of my resume…but it didn’t match up with the one that I’d sent them with the application!

I tried to lie and say that the jobs that didn’t match were my roommates and it must’ve been some weird computer glitch.

As you might suspect, that lie didn’t work and I was basically blacklisted from all jobs that this major employer in the area.

So, that’s why you should never create a fake resume – even if you think there’s no way in hell that it will catch up with you.

Can You Tailor Your Resume To The Job You’re Applying For?

Yes, you can do this as long as you don’t put fake jobs and other information on the resume. Instead, think of this as just highlighting your relevant experience.

The important thing to remember as you do this is to keep things factual.

This means don’t fudge your dates of employment, don’t give yourself a better sounding job title, and don’t lie about your job duties.

But you can leave out jobs that are irrelevant to the experience that you need for the position that you’re interested in landing.

Is It Illegal To Use A Fake Resume To Get A Job? What Happens If I Use One?

While you might think that using a fake resume would be considered fraud, it is surprisingly not illegal anywhere in the United States. The exception will be if you sign something attesting to the resume being truthful, which doesn’t really happen for 99.9% of people.

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Obviously, if you apply for a government job with a fake resume then you can end up in some legal hot water. Otherwise, it’s not illegal.

Basically, it is up to the company that is considering hiring you to do their due diligence and determine if your resume is factual or not.

And there’s nothing preventing you from telling a page full of lies, if that’s that you decide to do. But it can be difficult to keep those lies straight, and eventually you’ll slip up and get caught.

You won’t get arrested for using a fake resume. The worst case scenario is that you won’t get the job, or any other job offered by the company where you’re interviewing with the fake resume.

If you do end up using a fake resume to get a job, then you will likely get fired if the company ever finds out about it.

Are Fake References Illegal?

If you’re using a fake resume, then you’re probably also using fake references for this made up job history. Yup, I’ve done that myself in the past.

The good news, for both of us, is that this is not illegal anywhere in the United States.

Again, it seems like it should be considered fraud, but it’s not – it’s perfectly legal.

If you do end up using a fake reference to get a job, then you will likely get fired if the company ever finds out about it.

Moral of the story: you can use a fake resume to try to land a new job, but it’s never really a good idea. Take it from someone who has done it and regretted it.

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