Is a potential employee entitled to an answer of why they were not hired?

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Is a potential employee entitled to an answer of why they were not hired?

My wife applied for a job as a nurse for a federal prison. She completed all the paperwork and even took a drug screen. The subcontractor made a phone call to Washington DC. and was told to not hire her. She has called the subcontractor to find out what the determination was and cannot get anyone who can or is willing to tell her why. All she wants, is too find out what the reasoning was. Is it wrong to expect an answer for not being hired.

Asked on March 9, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, West Virginia

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Morally, you may be right--it doesn't seem too much to ask, to be told the reason you were not hired. Unfortunately, legally, you are incorrect: employment is employment at will, and one consequence of that is that an employer may freely choose whom to hire--and whom to not hire--and is not required to explain its decision to anyone, including a rejected applicant. The potential employer does not have to provide an answer to this question.


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