Labor: The dos and don’ts of using of arrest and conviction records to deny employment

Asking employment candidates about previous arrests may give rise to a viable discrimination claim

“Have you ever been convicted of a felony?” This is one of the most common questions on employment applications. However, according to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) guidelines, this broad question may give rise to a viable discrimination claim.

While there is currently no federal law that prohibits an employer from asking about arrest and conviction records, the EEOC has determined that “using such records as an absolute measure to prevent an individual from being hired could limit the employment opportunities of some protected groups and thus cannot be used in this way.”

Contributing Author

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Tina M. Maiolo

A member of Carr Maloney, P.C., Tina Maiolo partners with clients to operate and grow their businesses. She focuses her legal practice in...

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