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Interviewing and Selecting Job Candidates: Tennessee

Interviewing and Selecting Job Candidates requirements for other states

Federal law and guidance on this subject should be reviewed together with this section.

Author: Christine P. Corrigan, CPC Writing Services

Summary

  • The Tennessee Human Rights Act and the Tennessee Disability Act prohibit discrimination based on age (40 and over), race, creed, color, religion, sex, national origin and disability, and require fewer employees for coverage than federal law. See Tennessee Human Rights Act and Tennessee Disability Act.
  • The Tennessee Human Rights Act recognizes religion, sex, national origin and age as a "bona fide occupational qualification" in limited circumstances. See BFOQ Exception.
  • Employers in Tennessee are prohibited from discriminating against employees based on union membership or lack thereof. See Free Association Protection.
  • Tennessee law does not prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity, but the City of Nashville tried to do so. See Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity.
  • Tennessee has enacted the "Equal Access to Interstate Commerce Act," which prohibits any local government from imposing on person an antidiscrimination practice that varies in any manner from the definition of "discriminatory practices" under the THRA. See Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity.
  • The Volunteer State does not prohibit employers from making arrest or conviction inquiries. However, because Tennessee generally follows federal law in interpreting the THRA, employers should be aware of federal limitations on the use of arrest and conviction records. See Arrest & Conviction Inquiries.
  • The Tennessee Lawful Employment Act permits, but does not require, employers to use the federal E-Verify program to verify the employment authorization status of new hires. However, employers using this program will receive the benefit of a compliance safe harbor. See E-Verify.
  • Tennessee does not prohibit private employers from adopting anti-nepotism policies. The state does have a broad anti-nepotism law for public employers and employees. See Anti-Nepotism Laws.
  • Employers may not seek access to the personal social media accounts of job applicants. See Social Media Privacy Protection.