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Hiring questions: What’s off limits?

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in Hiring,Human Resources

Q. What questions are off limits on an employment application or when conducting a job interview?

A. While there's a long list of matters about what an employer should not ask a prospective employee in general, an employer should avoid asking any questions that may elicit information about any protected characteristics, including an individual’s gender, age, race, national origin, religion and disability.
    Moreover, avoid asking questions about an individual’s history of filing workers’ compensation or unemployment claims. Although you may (and should) ask whether an applicant is legally capable of working in the United States, you should not ask about citizenship status. Similarly, while it's permissible to ask whether an applicant has been convicted of any crime, you may not ask about arrests that did not result in convictions. In general, if you don’t need to know the information, don’t ask the question.

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