Hawaii Hiring laws & HR compliance analysis

Hawaii Hiring: What you need to know

The Hawaii Fair Employment Practices Law prohibits all public and private employers from discriminating in hiring based on race, sex (including gender identity or expression; pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions), sexual orientation, age, religion, color, ancestry, disability (including association or relationship with an individual with a disability), marital status, National Guard obligation, genetic test results, arrest and court records, reproductive health decision, domestic or sexual violence victim status, breastfeeding requirements, assignment of income for child support obligations, or credit history or report (HI Rev. Stat. Sec. 378-1 et seq.). The Law covers all employers, regardless of size. Additional information is available.
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The Law prohibits employers from using an application form or otherwise asking applicants questions that directly or indirectly express any limitation, specification, or discrimination about a protected characteristic. Therefore, employers should refrain from asking about any of these characteristics on the application form or during interviews unless there is a bona fide occupational qualification (BFOQ).
Administrative rules issued by the Hawaii Civil Rights Commission expressly provide that a preemployment inquiry must not ask whether an applicant is male; female; or Mr., Mrs., Miss, Ms., single, married, divorced, widowed, or separated; the name and ages of spouses and children or spouses' place of employment; or the applicant's age or date of birth, religious affiliation, attendance at religious services, or any question identifying an applicant's religious denomination or practice (HI Admin. Code. Sec. 12-46-103 et seq.).
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