Small Business Loans for Convicted Felons?

When a convicted felon leaves prison there are a lot of challenges ahead. You need to learn the best way to re-enter society while finding employment, health care, housing and mental health services.

Starting your own business is one option for former convicts who need employment. If you have a talent for any of the following then you may be able to run your own business. This is only a partial list.

  • Handyman
  • Painting
  • Cleaning
  • Writing
  • Virtual Assistant

In order to start your own business you may want to apply for one of the small business loans for convicted felons. Applying for small business loans for convicted felons can be broken down into a few parts.

How much cash will you need?

You will need to know how much money to request when applying for small business loans for convicted felons. Consider the amount of money needed to get the business started and what you will be spending the money on. It’s important to be specific when estimating. Then consider the following questions:

Do you have a resume?

You will need a lot of paperwork in order to complete an application. First you will need a resume. You can write one yourself or hire a freelancer to help. Your resume should include your work history and a description for each job.

Can you locate your tax returns?

Personal and business tax returns must be included with applications for small business loans for convicted felons.

Can you explain your business idea eloquently?

This is another document you may want to hire a freelancer to assist with. You need to be able to describe your business idea clearly and succinctly. Address any challenges and how financing will loan

There are three forms that will also be included in your package: SBA Form 4-Application for Business Loan, SBA Form 912- Statement of Personal History, and SBA Form 413- Personal Financial Statement.

If you are denied one of the small business loans for convicted felons, there are other ways to find employment. In fact there are a variety of resources available in addition to getting small business loans for convicted felons.

For those who don’t receive one of the small business loans for convicted felons:

The Second Chance Act (SCA)

Ex-felons can benefit from The Second Chance Act. It was developed to help former convicts with a number of issues they may be facing such as jobs, alcohol/drug dependence, mental health problems and finding a home. The goal of SCA is to prevent recidivism rates from increasing by taking care of important needs before they become a problem.  State and local governments implement programs based on the funds provided by the federal government.

Check with your Department of Public Safety’s Office of Research and Planning/Office of Transition Services office. Each state has its own resources.

There are some things you can do to increase your chances of finding employment if you don’t receive one of the small business loans for convicted felons.

  1. Start the job search before you are actually released if that is possible. There may be helpful resources at your correctional facility. Inquire about resume writing assistance. Find out if there is anything you can do to get a couple of your birth certificate and social security card because you will need them during your job hunt. Is your drivers’ license clean? See what you can do to make sure it is because that will be a big help too.
  2. Practice interviewing with a friend. You will want to be able to sound polished when discussing your incarceration. Show that you are reformed and that you have a plan for your future. Confidence is key. Always tell the truth because the last thing you need is to be caught in a lie.
  3. Even if you don’t get one of the small business loans for convicted felons you can still work as a freelancer. Do you have a skill that would allow you to get work freelancing? This is good as there may be no need for any background checks. There are many freelancing  jobs in wide ranging fields from writing to graphic design. A good place to start looking for jobs could be

There are many individuals who find employment without small business loans for convicted felons. By all means go through the application process, but rest assured that there are other options.


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