Interview questions for employers refers to the questions that they must ask a potential candidate for employment during the hiring process.  Generally speaking, employers are free to ask job interview questions that relate to the job position being applied for.  However, the employer needs to be careful that they aren’t asking any questions that might be considered discriminatory in any way.

Under federal and state employment laws, employers can’t discriminate against employees when it comes to factors such as their age, national origin, sex, disability, pregnancy, religion, and other characteristics.

What are Some Questions That Employers Should Avoid Asking During an Interview?

Some interview questions for employers to avoid are:

  • What is your national origin?
  • What church do you go to?
  • What sexual orientation are you?
  • Do you have any physical disabilities or conditions?
  • How old are you, or what is your date of birth?
  • Are you divorced or separated?

A general rule of thumb is that all questions should be focused and directed toward the particular position that the person is applying for.  Questions that don’t relate specifically to the job position might be misinterpreted as being discriminatory.  For instance, rather than asking whether the person has a disability, the employer might list a number of tasks associated with the job, and then ask whether the person would be capable of performing them.

Are There Any Employer Defenses for Discrimination?

Defending against employment discrimination can often be challenging for an employer.  It may involve an investigation conduct by a government agency such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.  A common defense is that the employer had a legitimate and non-discriminatory motivation for asking the interview questions.

For instance, if physical labor is required for the job, it only makes sense that the employer can ask whether the person will be capable of performing the task (such as lifting heavy objects).  While the employer can’t directly ask about physical disabilities, it may be a defense if they can prove that all the interview questions served a practical purpose in terms of the hiring and selection process.

Do I Need a Lawyer For Concerns Regarding Interview Questions for Employers?

Employment laws are very strict, especially when it comes to issues like discrimination during the hiring procedure.  If you have any questions or concerns regarding the interview process, you may wish to hire a discrimination lawyers for assistance.  Your attorney can review your company’s policies to determine whether your interviewing process follows legal guidelines.  Also, if you need to be involved in a civil lawsuit, your attorney can provide you with legal advice during the process.