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

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

The New Hampshire Law Against Discrimination prohibits employers from making inquiries of prospective employees that state or imply any limitation or discrimination based on age, sex, sexual orientation, race, color, marital status, physical or mental disability, religious creed, or national origin, unless based on a bona fide occupational qualification (BFOQ) (NH Rev. Stat. Sec. 354-A:1 et seq.). The Law applies to all public employers and private employers with six or more employees.
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Employers should also avoid inquiring about any claims or complaints an applicant has filed. Many laws, including fair employment laws and workers' compensation laws prohibit employers from discriminating against a prospective employee because of previously filed or pending claims. Under the New Hampshire Asbestos Management and Control Law, an employer is prohibited from discriminating against any applicant or employee who has complained about a violation of this statute in a covered worksite (NH Rev. Stat. Sec. 141-E:19). Employers are also prohibited from discriminating against mothers who breastfeed (NH Rev. Stat. Sec. 132:10-d).
An employer may make an employment inquiry about a protected characteristic only if it is reasonably necessary to the normal operation of the employer's business and there is no less intrusive way to ensure that the applicant will be able to perform the essential functions of the job in question. In order to be a BFOQ, a characteristic must be absolutely essential to the applicant's ability to perform the job. For example, being female would be a legitimate BFOQ for a person applying for a job as a model of women's clothing. The BFOQ exception applies only in limited ...

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