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

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

The New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (LAD) prohibits employment practices that discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, national origin, ancestry, age, marital status, civil union status, domestic partnership status, affectional or sexual orientation, genetic information, sex (including pregnancy and sexual harassment), gender identity or expression, disability (including acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection), atypical hereditary cellular or blood trait, liability for military service, nationality, or for the refusal to submit to a genetic test or make the test results available to an employer (NJ Rev. Stat. Sec. 10:5-1 et seq.). The Law covers all employers, regardless of size. The LAD does not expressly address preemployment inquiries. However, it does prohibit employers from discriminating in any job-related action, including recruitment, interviewing, hiring, promotions, discharge, compensation, and the terms, conditions, and privileges of employment on the basis of any protected characteristic. Any differential treatment, statement, or conduct that indicates a limitation, preference, or bias based on a protected characteristic may constitute evidence of unlawful discrimination.
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A separate state law prohibits employers from refusing to hire or otherwise discriminating against an individual because he or she does or does not smoke or use tobacco products (NJ Rev. Stat. Sec. 34:6B-1).
Bona fide occupational qualification (BFOQ) exception. An employer may make an employment inquiry about one of the previously listed characteristics only if it is reasonably necessary to the normal operation of the employer's business and there is no ...

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