Legal Interview Questions: Dos and Don’ts for Employers

Legal Interview Questions: Dos and Don’ts for Employers

Whether you’re an employer or potential employee, it’s important to know what interview questions are legal to ask. A good rule of thumb is to stick to questions that have to do with the job’s functions. For example, a employer cannot ask if you’re married or have kids, but he or she can ask if your schedule will allow for travel or working overtime if needed.

Here are a few basic dos and don’ts for employers to keep in mind as they put together a list of legal interview questions to ask:

  • Do ask questions that will determine if a client is qualified, such as skills, certifications or related work history that would be relevant to the position.
  • Do ask if they’re qualified to work in the United States or what languages they speak, read or write fluently.
  • If the applicant was in the military, do ask about the training or education they received. You cannot ask if they were honorably discharged or which branch they served in, though.
  • Depending on the job you’re hiring for, do feel free to “Google” the potential employee to see what information is public about them, but don’t ask for any social media login information (such as Facebook, Twitter, etc).
  • Don’t ask questions of a personal nature, including those that relate to religious beliefs, family status, nation of origin, age, etc.
  • Don’t ask about their current health status or if they have any disabilities. Instead, ask if they can perform the specific job duties or if they can fulfill the job responsibilities with reasonable accommodations.
  • Don’t ask about any clubs or social organizations he or she belongs to. You can, however, ask about professional organizations or trade groups, like the American Bar Association.

Pacific University in Oregon has a great list of legal interview questions for employers and potential employees to refer to. Want additional advice? Feel free to contact us – we’re happy to help!

Photo Credit: Alan Cleaver

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