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Applications and date of birth

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Human Resources

Q. We use a standardized employment application form. One of the questions on the form asks for the applicant’s date of birth. We have been told that it is illegal to ask for this information, as it might lead to age discrimination. Is this true?

A.
The Michigan Department of Civil Rights has issued a “Pre-Employment Inquiry Guide” addressing information it considers relevant and legal for a prospective employer to request from an applicant. With respect to age, the guide states that it is appropriate to ask whether the applicant is 18 years old or older. However, it is not permissible to ask an applicant’s age or date of birth.

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