Missouri Pre-Employment Inquiries (Interviewing) laws & HR compliance analysis

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

The Missouri Human Rights Act (MHRA) prohibits employment practices that discriminate based on race, color, religion, national origin, sex, ancestry, age (40 to 70 years), or disability. The MHRA specifically provides that applicants should not be asked about any of these characteristics, either on an application form or in an interview, unless based on a bona fide occupational qualification (BFOQ) (Mo. Rev. Stat. § 213.055). The MHRA covers private employers with six or more employees and all state and local government agencies, regardless of size. More information is available at the Missouri discrimination section.
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Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) policy. A separate law expressly states that the provisions of the MHRA apply to individuals with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection, AIDS, and AIDS-related complex (Mo. Rev. Stat. § 191.665). Employers are prohibited from discriminating against individuals protected under the law, unless a particular individual is unable to perform job duties or poses a direct threat to the health of others.
Disabilities. An employer may not ask whether an applicant has a physical or mental disability or about the nature or severity of any disability. Applicants may be asked only whether they are able to perform the duties of the job in question. An individual's current, illegal use of, or addiction to a controlled substance is expressly excluded from the definition of a "disability" under the law (Mo. Rev. Stat. § 213.010). However, a person may be considered to have a disability if that person:
• Has successfully completed a supervised drug rehabilitation program and is no longer addicted to or engaging in the illegal use of drugs;
• Has otherwise ...

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