Interviewing and Selecting Job Candidates: Montana
Federal law and guidance on this subject should be reviewed together with this section.
Authors: Jason Ritchie and William Dabney, Holland & Hart LLP.
- Under Montana law, an employer may not engage in discriminatory selection practices based upon any protected characteristic, which includes race, sex, religion, color, national origin, age, physical or mental disability, marital status and pregnancy/maternity. See Montana Human Rights Act.
- The Montana Human Rights Act applies to all employers regardless of size. See Montana Human Rights Act.
- A BFOQ defense is not available in Montana for distinctions made regarding an applicant's race, creed, color or national origin. See Bona Fide Occupational Qualification Exception.
- Employers may not ask about arrests, but may ask about criminal convictions. See Arrest and Conviction Inquiries.
- Employers should carefully check an applicant's employment history, criminal history and references to avoid potential negligent hiring lawsuits while still respecting the applicant's privacy rights. See Negligent Hiring; References.
- Montana employers may not interfere with an employee's rights to use lawful products while off duty. Therefore, they should use caution when asking applicants about such conduct. See Off-Duty Conduct.
- Employers may not record interviews or conversations in Montana or intercept or monitor any electronic communications (such as email) without the permission or acknowledgment of all parties to the communication. See Recording Interviews.
- A social media privacy law prohibits employers from requiring job applicants or employees to disclose the password to their personal social media accounts. See Social Media.