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Questions about marriage status?

(11 Posts)
SquishySquirmy Thu 02-Aug-18 14:12:06

Am job hunting at the moment, and some employers request that applicants fill in a form with some basic details on along with their CV.
One of these includes questions on marital status etc, which I was a bit surprised by as I had always understood that they couldn't ask about that.

In a way I'm not sure it matters: Its not that my marital status is a secret, and if an employer was going to (illegally) take that into account they could find it out very easily without needing to ask.
Equally, I cant think of a good reason for it being on the form, especially if there is a risk of them getting into trouble for it.

I suppose I'm just curious about whether my surprise was justified, or if I'd misunderstood the law?
I'm not looking to cause trouble or anything like that.

Employer is in the UK, and accepts speculative CVs but is not actively recruiting (if that makes any difference - I don't see why it would).

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SquishySquirmy Thu 02-Aug-18 18:13:07


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Singlenotsingle Thu 02-Aug-18 18:17:39

It's not against the law per se but if the company subsequently went on to discriminate against you because of your marital status, this could be evidence to support your case against them. You could put 'Ms'.

SquishySquirmy Thu 02-Aug-18 18:29:46

Thanks Singlenosingle. I thought they couldn't ask at all.
Can't really put Ms, they are not asking for title, they are asking the direct questions: "Marital status"
"D.O.B" etc

I could leave it blank, but probably wont because I can't see anything to gain from doing so. eg, if its an innocent question then they will think I am making a fuss/haven't read the form properly. If they were going to take it into account when hiring, they could find out very easily anyway.

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Roselind Thu 02-Aug-18 19:21:58

They might like to take a look at the guidance on .gov website:

SquishySquirmy Thu 02-Aug-18 21:17:19

That's what I thought Roselind and why I was surprised. But as I assumed that the company has legal advice, and that those working in HR know employment law better than myself, I thought that maybe it wasnt always illegal; e.g. It could be less black and white than it appears on the gov.UK

Tbh, to me it doesn't reflect well on the professionalism of the company. It's in a highly regulated industry, where the consequences of mistakes can be huge, so I would worry that if there standards are sloppy in one area they may be sloppy in other areas too.
But, I do need a job badly and beggars can't be choosers I suppose.

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justcontemplatingsomething Thu 02-Aug-18 21:32:09

Does that information get removed when your application goes to the selection panel? I'm doing application forms at the minute and there are questions about marital status, dependents, sexual orientation etc. But it states that that information is for monitoring purposes only and the selection panel don't see it.

Heratnumber7 Thu 02-Aug-18 21:34:04

They shouldn't really be asking for your DOB either.
Can you leave both fields blank?

flowerythorns Thu 02-Aug-18 21:49:30

If it's an online form it's likely to be for monitoring purposes (audits etc) but never forwarded with the actual application for shortlisting.

NHS do this for every job.

SquishySquirmy Thu 02-Aug-18 22:18:52

No, it's definitely not a form for monitoring purposes or one of those diversity questionnaires. It's not an online form - it's one they want filled in and emailed along with a c v. Questions directly relevant to recruiting (questions about current role etc) are on the same page as the questions about marital status etc so I don't see how they could separate them out.

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Derpy84 Mon 27-Aug-18 21:06:19

Schools in my local authority send out a sort of diversity form with applications. For us, it's just for diversity purposes though. Prospective employers can ask for those sorts of details but, legally, you don't have to supply them.
I would probably ask the company why they need those details before i filled in the form?

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