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"Can a prospective employer ask if I smoke, or if I have a mortgage?" | Sklover Working Wisdom
Question: Can a prospective employer tell me they will only hire me if I already have health insurance? Can they ask if I smoke, if so, how much a day, and if I suffer any health problems as a result? Can they ask me if I bought my home, how did I get a mortgage, and if I purchased it by cash, from where were those funds derived? Beth Terre Haute, Indiana Answer: Dear Beth: As you probably know, I am not licensed to practice law in Indiana. However, based on a brief review of Indiana law, and my almost 30 years of experience, I believe the answers to your questions are all "Yes." Let me explain: 1. Employers cannot refuse to hire people based on certain criteria or categories; all other criteria and categories are permissible. Though the law in different states say slightly different things, in general the law says that an employer cannot refuse to hire people based on their age, gender, religion, race, nationality, disability and a few other categories, such as sexual