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How employers can avoid asking illegal interview questions

Despite occasional market jitters, the employment market continues to grow as we near the end of the summer. According to a recent Wall Street Journal report, hiring in June topped analysts’ expectations, with 222,000 jobs added last month. This was the strongest month-to-month increase since February, and given the market conditions, it would not be extraordinary to see increased hiring through the rest of the year.

With more hiring and more candidates, employers must still use reasonable care when interviewing. Avoiding bad a bad hire is a constant goal, but interviewers must adhere to state and federal anti-discrimination laws when questioning candidates. This post will focus on a few areas where employers can put themselves in jeopardy when questions are not asked correctly.

Questions about nationality or religious affiliation – Depending on the circumstances, a candidate’s nationality or religious practices may not be so obvious. Nevertheless, employers  must be very careful not to ask questions or make assumptions about an applicant’s religion or race.

Questions about disabilities or handicaps – Similarly, interview questions about potential disabilities or specific health conditions should not be posed if they do not reasonably relate to an applicant’s ability to perform the job.

Questions about family and children – Additionally, an interviewer may not ask questions about an applicant’s family; especially whether an applicant has children or access to child care. Again, a person’s marital status or parenting platform should not be a factor in whether an applicant can perform the job.

If you have additional questions about avoiding illegal interview questions, contact me at Egan Law Firm

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