Illegal Interview Questions

The Civil Rights Act of 1964 dictates that discrimination based on national origin, citizenship, age, marital status, disabilities, arrest record, military discharges, or personal information is illegal. As you begin the interview process in your quest for a job or internship, it is wise to be prepared for and aware of illegal interview questions. Although one might believe that an employer should know that some questions are illegal, some may accidentally or purposefully ask you illegal questions. Be mindful of the tone you use when responding, to remain professional at all times.

 

Marital StatusAre you married? Is this your married name?

 

Can you help me understand how being married relates to this position?

 

Sexual OrientationWhat is your sexual orientation?

 

Can you help me understand how my sexual orientation relates to this position?

 

Parental StatusAre you pregnant? How many kids do you have?

 

Are you concerned about my time constraints? If so, you should not be because..

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AgeHow old are you? When were you born? When did you graduate high school?

 

I have the experience you are seeking which can be seen on my resume...

 

PersonalHow much do you weigh? What is your political affiliation? What is your religious affiliation?

 

Can you help me understand how religion relates to the position we are discussing?

 

Criminal RecordDo you have a criminal record? Have you ever been in jail? What for?

 

If you'd like to see my legal history, I am willing to give you written permission to perform a background check.

 

DisabilitiesMay we see your medical records? Do you have a disability? Have you been hospitalized recently? Why?

 

I am very confident in my abilities to do this job.

 

CitizenshipWhere are your parents from? What is your native language?

 

I can assure that I possess the communication skills necessary to be successful in this position.

 

To determine work authorization, employers may lawfully ask two questions of all applicants

1. Are you authorized to work in the United States on a full-time basis for any employer without restriction?

2. Will you now or in the near future require employment visa sponsorship, such as H-1B? If the applicant answers yes, the employer may then ask what the applicant's current employment eligibility is based on, what the applicant's immigration status is, and how long it will last.