Questions That Employers Should Avoid During The Hiring Process

When recruiting and interviewing new employees, there are a variety of potential landmines that employers should do their best to avoid. Here are some of the topics about which employers should not inquire during the hiring process – either because they directly reveal a protected status or may indirectly reveal a protected status:

  • Marital status
  • Maiden name
  • Spouse’s name
  • Spouse’s work
  • Sexual orientation
  • Age or date of birth
  • Sex (unless a bona fide occupational qualification (BFOQ))
  • Height or weight (unless a BFOQ)
  • Race or color
  • Color of eyes or color of hair
  • National origin or heritage
  • Citizenship (but an employer may ask if an individual is legally permitted to work in U.S.)
  • Number or age of children
  • Public assistance information
  • Physical or mental disabilities
  • Person to contact in case of emergency
  • Dates of education
  • Religion or creed (including associations/memberships)
  • Union membership or sentiments

Takeaway: During the hiring process it is important not only to ensure that a candidate has the necessary qualifications and experience, but also to avoid asking for information that could arguably lead to a discrimination claim. For more tips on the hiring process, click here.

About Michael Miller

Michael is a Chambers-rated attorney in Briggs and Morgan's Employment, Benefits, and Labor group and is head of the firm’s Employment Law Counseling and Compliance practice group. He has 25 years experience counseling employers to prevent unwanted litigation and advises companies of ongoing changes in federal, state and local employment law. Michael advises employers in all areas of employment law including discipline and discharge, leaves of absence, wage and hour compliance, non-compete and confidentiality agreements, affirmative action plans, background checking, and drug/alcohol testing. For Michael's full bio, click here.

Posted on September 15, 2015, in Hiring and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Questions That Employers Should Avoid During The Hiring Process.

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