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A Tech Job Recruiter called me and one of his first questions was what year did I graduate high school?

Isn't that question illegal in the United States? I do sound very young over the phone, maybe he thought I was 19 or something and the employer wanted a little bit older.

Also this same recruiter asked me an acceptable salary. I told him I am aware of starting salaries for junior programmers and those should be fine. But he forced me say an actual number, I really didn't want to because I may have picked a salary lower than they planned to offer, and that could cost me money without even knowing.

Any advice on how to answer the salary question?

Either way I am not talking to this recruiter again if he calls me back like he suggested he might.

  • Questions are very rarely illegal. However, there are questions where lying in your response is legal. – Peter - Unban Robert Harvey Sep 29 '16 at 17:15
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Not illegal but not smart either. As Joe points out in his comment it opens them up for lawsuits if someone claims a hiring decision were made based on a protected class criteria.

With respect to how to answer questions of this nature, I'd go with "I can answer that if you want but aren't you concerned with EEOC ramifications to that question?" Depending on the type of recruiter you are talking to (hired by the company to fill a role or spam job postings with resumes) they may not care as this information may not make it those who are involved in hiring.

  • That's exactly right. They can even ask you your date of birth. But you're also correct that it's a very stupid question. – Chris E Sep 29 '16 at 16:06
  • I wish I would have asked him to email me the high school date graduation question, and make sure it is his company email and include his company signature in email. Maybe that would have scared him. – Programmer7 Sep 29 '16 at 16:09
  • @Programmer7 If this was some dude overseas who just spams resumes at openings they seriously wouldn't have cared at all. – Myles Sep 29 '16 at 16:14

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