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Can a United States Employer Ask a Job Applicant for Their Date of Birth?

  • By: lipplaw
  • Published: February 24, 2021
Rights of an Intellectual Property Owner

Ever wondered if it’s legal for a potential employer to ask you for your date of birth (DOB)? In the United States, the answer is yes.

While the employer can ask for your date of birth, they must only use this information for legal purposes and cannot use a DOB to discriminate against applicants based on their age.

For example, an employer can ask for a DOB to conduct a background check.

The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) protects US workers 40+ from age discrimination. Also, any age is considered a protected class in some jurisdictions, like Washington DC, so even younger workers can be protected.

Age discrimination is one of the most common but difficult types of discrimination to prove. Many older workers that are subjected to discrimination choose to retire or switch careers instead of suing their former employers for age discrimination.

Employment lawsuits can take many years and several thousands in legal fees to resolve. Employers can receive insurance coverage to protect against employee-side claims called Employment Practices Liability Insurance (EPLI). Start-up companies and fast-growing organizations should consider obtaining EPLI coverage to protect against inevitable employment claims.

If you are a startup or employee looking for age discrimination guidance, contact the Lipp Law Firm today.

Kathryn Megan Lipp

Katie dedicates her practice to employment separation guidance.
Based on her successful employment litigation practice...Read More

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