Is it legal to be Passed up for promotion because I have kids

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Is it legal to be Passed up for promotion because I have kids

I am next in line for the promotion
and have done the work for 7 years.
He had stated he doesn’t want a
single mother in that position. He
will hire a less qualified woman who
he knows has grown children. Is
this legal in NC

Asked on November 2, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, North Carolina

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

The fact that an employer can hire, fire, demote, promote, etc. much as it sees fit. That is so long as no employment contract or union agreement is being breached. Also, legally actionable discrimination (i.e. that based on race, religion, gender, disability, age (over 40), etc. is illegal under federal law. That having been said, in your state, there is no additional legal protection provived regarding unfavorable treatment due to a person's family status (i.e. being a parent).

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, this is not illegal in your state. You write that they are promoting or hiring another woman, so this would not be sex-based discrimination. However, your state does not prohibit discrimination on the basis of family status or make-up, so it is legal to choose to favor someone with no children or older (grown) children over someone with younger children. What you describe is unfair, but is apparently legal in your state.


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