Do Not Ask Job Applicants if they have any “Health Problems”

Unless you are interested in a lawsuit.  A recent EEOC news release describes a case in which the employer was alleged to have asked disability-related questions of job applicants including whether the employees had “health problems” or were on any medications and if, so, which ones.  In addition, the employer was alleged to have fired an employee a few days after he suffered a seizure at work, despite the employee’s prior satisfactory performance and a release from his doctor.  Ultimately, the employer paid $25,000 to settle the case.

While this settlement may not be large when compared to some cases, it does serve as a reminder that employers cannot ask applicants medical questions, or require a medical examination, until after a conditional job offer has been extended and, then only if all employees in the same type of job also have to answer the questions and/or take the exam.

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