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Arkansas Pre-Employment Inquiries (Interviewing): What you need to know

The Arkansas Civil Rights Act prohibits employment practices that discriminate on the basis of race, religion, ancestry, national origin, gender (including pregnancy, childbirth, and related medical conditions), or the presence of any sensory, mental, or physical disability, but it does not specifically address the issue of preemployment inquiries on application forms or in job interviews (AR Stat. Sec. 16-123-102 et seq.). However, questions that ask applicants about any of these characteristics, either directly or indirectly, are likely to violate the Act unless the characteristic is job-related. The Act covers all public and private employers with nine or more employees.
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Private employers. The Arkansas Civil Rights Act does not prohibit age discrimination. However, private employers with 20 or more employees are subject to the federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), which prohibits employers from discriminating against applicants who are 40 years of age or older.
Public employers. The Arkansas Age Discrimination in Employment Act prohibits age discrimination in public employment for those who are 40 years of age or older (AR Stat. Sec. 21-3-201). Questions regarding an applicant's age will likely violate the Act.
The federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) provides that employers may ask only whether an applicant is able to perform the essential functions of a particular job. It is unlawful to ask whether an applicant has a disability or about the nature or extent of any disability. The ADA covers employers with 15 or more employees, including state and local governments. Arkansas employers that are subject to both the ADA and state law ...

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