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    Lawful or Unlawful Questions on an Application Form

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    Take a look at each question below and ask yourself if it is lawful to ask for that information on an application form, or if asking that question could lead to unlawful results. Is it lawful to ask applicants to provide their age on an application form - Yes or No? Why? Is it lawful to ask about educational attainment: Yes or No? Why? Do not explain circumstances under which an unlawful question could be made lawful.

    With some of these questions, it's not necessarily the question itself that is unlawful. Ask yourself if the question could lead to divulging information that would have an unlawful effect.

    Lawful or Unlawful?
    Previous arrests
    Previous felony convictions
    Distance between work and residence
    Domestic responsibilities
    Previous work experience
    Educational attainment
    High school favorite subjects
    Grade point average
    Received workers' compensation in past
    Currently receiving workers' compensation
    Child care arrangements
    Length of time on previous job
    Reason for leaving previous job
    Home ownership
    Any current medical problems
    History of mental illness
    OK to seek references from previous employer?
    Have you provided complete/truthful information?
    Native language
    Willing to work on Easter and Christmas
    Get recommendation from pastor/priest

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    Solution Preview

    1. Birthplace Unlawful
    It is illegal to ask about a person's birthplace, because it references a person's national origin. This reference could be used to discriminate against a person who is not a natural born citizen of the United States.

    2. Previous arrests Unlawful
    It is improper to ask questions about arrest records. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) takes this position because statistics show that the arrest rates for minorities are higher than that of whites, thus making the question unfair. Not all arrests are convictions of a crime and therefore off limits.

    3. Previous felony convictions Lawful
    The employer can ask if the applicant has been convicted of a felony. Thy must be able to show that the questioning is related to the job. Convictions are lawful to ask about

    4. Distance between work and residence Lawful
    This is a question that employees may ask to determine reliability. It is not considered discriminatory so it can be asked .

    5. Domestic responsibilities Unlawful
    This would be an unlawful question because it can be used to determine gender. Gender questions can be used as a basis of discrimination.

    6. Height Unlawful
    The height of an individual is irrelevant to a positon. Many states have laws prohibiting discrimination based on height

    7. ...

    Solution Summary

    This is an 824 word solution that outlines lawful and unlawful questions related to an application form. The answers explain whether various questions on application forms can be used. There are a total of 26 questions covered in this solution.