What to do if I was offered a job with a healthcare facility and they found out that I have an allergy to latex but now they won’t hire me?

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What to do if I was offered a job with a healthcare facility and they found out that I have an allergy to latex but now they won’t hire me?

Is this legal after they’ve already offered me the job?

Asked on February 9, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, New Mexico

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

It is legal in a case where you cannot actually do the job (note: this assumes that the allergy to latex will materially impede your ability to do the job and/or expose the employer to potentially liability, if you suffer injury, disability, etc. from the exposure to the latex). In the first instance, an employer is not required to employ or pay someone for a job which that person cannot actually do.

In the second instance, given how ubiquitous latex is in healthcare facilities, a good argument could be made that you committed fraud in your application by not disclosing your allergy, thus invalidating any offer which was made to you.

Third, a job offer is not necessarily binding at all, unless (1) it is part of an actual employment contract; or (2) the employer, at the time it made the offer, knew you'd have to do something to your significant detriment (e.g. give up an existing job; relocate) to take the offer, knowing that made you the offer anyway, and you did in fact, on reasonable reliance on the offer, act to your detriment.

Thus, there would seem to be multiple grounds under which they would be justified in not hiring you.


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