Oftentimes employers assign managers and staff to interview potential employment candidates without considering the consequences of illegal interview questions.
An illegal question is one that seeks information the employer is not entitled to request and/or not entitled to use as a basis for job decisions. Most illegal questions cross the line by inquiring about protected characteristics, such as age, disability, race or religion, which could be used to discriminate against the applicant.
Ask only job-related questions.
It is unlawful under federal law not to hire candidates because of their race, color, sex (including certain protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) individuals), religion, national origin, age, disability, genetic information or military service. Some states also prohibit discrimination based upon marital status and other factors. Employers should avoid questions and conversation that could lead to discussion of these prohibited areas.
Sample Illegal Questions:
Are you married?
What is your maiden name?
Acceptable Alternative: Have you ever been known or gone by a different name?
Note: This question is allowable only if the information is needed to verify the applicant’s qualifications.
Have you ever been arrested?
Have you ever spent a night in jail?
Have you ever been caught driving drunk?
Note: This is a delicate area. Although there is no federal law that clearly...
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