Q. Is it OK to ask an applicant about her immigration status before making an offer of employment? —A.R., New York
A. Don't ask applicants to state their national origin or whether they are citizens. Citizens and noncitizens legally residing in the United States are protected by federal and state laws that bar discrimination on the basis of national origin. However, you may ask applicants whether they have the legal right to work in the United States.
After hiring, you must ask all new employees to fill out a Form I-9 and produce documents establishing proof of identity and authorization to work.