Illegal Interview Questions In USA
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Illegal interview questions in USA

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HR Professional USA
See interview of Joy  Leo
Application blanks and pre-interview screening are not the only instrument to eliminate candidates from a job. Even certain interview questions may influence to deny or provide employment. To prevent such biased and discriminating decisions The EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) in the United States has strict guidelines not to discriminate any canidate based on age, creed, disability, national origin, race, religion, military duty, genetics or sex.

Here are some of the illegal questions to be avoided during a recruitment process.

1) When did you pass high school?

The intent of this question can be interpreted as to know the age of the applicant and could be considered as age discrimination. The appropriate way to ask this question is to simply ask the candidate if he/she has passed high school.

2) Do you have any family members working for this organization now or in the past?

Asking such question may lead to provide employment to the candidate if the answer is "yes" this is considered discrimination as it is not giving a fare chance for other candidates to compete.

3) What is your maiden name? (To a female candidate)

By asking this question the interviewer may try to find out the maritial status of the candidate. Asking maritial status may lead to discrimination aganist women employees. Applicants need not disclose maritial status.

4) Do you belong to any association or organization?

The answer to this question may lead to bias decision if the candidate is a member of the same club or association in which the interviewer is. This could also lead to other discrimination like religion, caste or gender if the candidate mention such specifice names.

5) Are you married? How many children do you have?

This is a personal question and has no relevance to the job duties. Asking such question may not be appropriate as it leads to women employee discrimination.

6) Do you have any disabilities?

Interviewer should not ask any question related to disability or closely related to disability. The interviewer may ask if the applicant need any special accomodation to execute the job.

7) Do you have any religious practice on working days?

This may cause discrimination aganist religion. Religion related or religion practice realted questions should not be asked. religious beliefs are personal to each candidate and should be respected.

8) How old are you? (OR) Date of birth on application.

This question leads to age discrimination. Application forms that request age information must be for permissible purpose. Permissible purpose are limited to when age requirement or limit is a bona fide job application or is based on reasonable factors other than age.

9) Are you living in your own home or rented home?

Such question may trigger the interviewer to understand the candidates financial strength that is considered discrimination. Questions that invites answers related to personal financial strength should be avoided.

10) Tell me about your family?

First the question is too personal. The answer will provide information that the applicant's maritial stauts, childcare arrangements. The intent of this question may be to find out if the employee is flexible on working hours. This should be asked like, "what hours can you work? can you work on weekends? what shift would be suitable for you?


Joy Leo