Are prospective employees required to disclose health-related information when interviewing for jobs?

UPDATED: Aug 29, 2011

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Are prospective employees required to disclose health-related information when interviewing for jobs?

I am one in-person interview away from possibly landing a job I have been pursuing for awhile. In the midst of all this, and after the final interview (coming up this week) was scheduled, I was diagnosed with “pre-cancer” that will require surgery with @ a 3-4 wk recovery time (if all goes well and surgery cures it). I scheduled surgery for 2 days post interview. If offered the job I will be expected to start 2-3 weeks later. If I get a verbal offer of a job: (a) can the company rescind offer if I tell them I need surgery? (b) if I would need to start in 4 weeks not 2?

Asked on August 29, 2011 North Carolina


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

The company can not rescind simply because you have surgery--but if you cannot start on the start date, then it may be considered that you have either rejected their offer or accepted it and breached the agreement. In other words, if you accept a job offer for a certain start date or range of possible start dates and you do not start then, you are the one breaching the agreement, which means that the employer would no longer need to give you the job.

If this is a critical issue to you--e.g. you *really* want this job--you should consult with an employment attorney, who can evaluate the specifics of the situation in detail and advise you as to your best course of action. Good luck.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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