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Pages: Illegal Physicals? [1]
Author Topic: Illegal Physicals?

Sr. Member
Posts: 28

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2011-12-24 13-07-05

Illegal Physicals? I often see jobs in my field requesting, or I am informed during the interview process, that an employee pass a physical prior to employment. Is such a request legal? I often wonder if this is a way to weed out employees that possibly have medical conditions for which the employer doesn't want to have to pay higher insurance premiums.
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Posts: 20

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2012-01-05 3-30-33-

It depends upon how their job descriptions are listed. If it specifiy states that, lifting up to 50lbs is part of the daily skills for the position, than if you apply should had best be able to lift 50 lbs, etc.
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Posts: 38

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2012-01-05 8-05-55-

granted Most jobs do state a certain amount of pounds that are required for the job, but the physical include others things besides just a general appraisal of one's lifting abilities.
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Posts: 29

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2012-01-05 16-29-54

R2H failed his phsyical The Proctologist failed him because he kept backing up...
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  • pluta

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    2012-01-08 16-51-40

    Quit impersonating a proctologist.
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  • mary

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    2012-01-10 16-29-43

    Bend over... The doctor is in...
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  • vantine

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    2012-01-12 7-54-51-

    wow you are a comedian today ;-P
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    Hero Member
    Posts: 34

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    2012-01-12 7-54-55-

    Pilots, Drivers, Surgeons......wouldn't you want yours to have a physical? It can also be a liability. You can't put laborers out in the sun that aren't physiy fit enough to handle the work. It'd kill them. Too many instances to list. Illegal? No way!
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  • Liesbeth

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    2012-01-12 8-57-28-

    And don't forget Evil Clowns.
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    Posts: 19

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    2012-01-13 17-19-57

    I wish I could forget evil clowns... then maybe I could sleep with the light off....
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  • wisehart

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    2012-01-14 3-38-18-

    Depends Would I want a professional driver to have good eyesight? Yes, I would think that would be required or that the driver have appropriate eyewear in order to work. Of course we want people who could put others in danger to have good health. To take that to the extreme, would it ever happen that a pilot with high cholesterol would be restricted from flying because he could possibly have a heart attack while working and put other people in danger? (I know it that is a stretch.) I'm just wondering why the full physical is necessary when only one aspect needs to be measured. The only reason I could think off would be because they would want to find out other health information.
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  • ketz

    Posts: 26

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    2012-01-14 20-38-04

    A pre-employment physical is usually done via a company selected doctor who is independent from the employer. The doctor who performs the physical is asked to provide an assessment of whether the employee can or cannot perform certain duties of the job. The doctor responds with a simple yes or no -- for the employer to be able to dig deeper into the employee's medical file would be a violation of medical privacy. Can the applicant lift 50 pounds would be a common question needing answered via the physical. Or, are there any vision limitations (a driving job would have such a requisite). In the case of high cholesterol, the only way I can think that an employee would fail a 50 pound lift test would be if that high cholesterol were leading to an instant heart attack during the physical. LOL! Okay. This is not a joking matter. Sorry. But at any rate that's how it works. Come on, people, this is basic ADA/EEOC stuff. Where are the recruiters and HR people to chime in?
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    Full Member
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    2012-01-14 21-33-17

    thanks Miz
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    Full Member
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    2012-01-15 5-50-44-

    And Poppenfizz is right, only employees can be subjected to this, and not non-hired applicants. Any company with any smarts will make sure to extend an offer of employment, conditional upon a positive physical -- IN WRITING -- to avoid lawsuits from disgruntled applicants who felt they were unfairly disqualified from the application process.
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  • portillo

    Posts: 11

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    2012-01-15 8-51-18-

    Can an employer discriminate against you for any medical reason? I had a friend who once applied to work at the Post Office. She went through the entire hiring process. She was even shown where in the building she would be working and when to report the following week. Then her physical came back and she was not hired. The only thing that could have possibly kept her from getting the job was that she took medication for a seizure disorder. Which was stated, of course, in the physical.
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  • kilman

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    Posts: 18

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    2012-01-15 11-41-28

    Not sure about that. A seizure disorder is a serious medical condition to have. That's not going to pose the same potential health threat (disruption in an ability to perform a job function) as having high cholesterol. High cholesterol doesn't have you writhing on the floor with lost consciousness, in a potentially deadly setting. You might ask some of the labor attorneys in the legal forum what they think.
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    Posts: 25

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    2012-01-15 18-58-44

    It is legal only after a conditional offer of employment has been extended. In other words, it cannot be used in the screening process to weed out potential candidates. It can be used to screen out applicants who have been conditionally hired pending the outcome of the physical.
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  • blumberg

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    2012-01-15 20-53-53

    Depends on the job I drove for UPS in Ohio for a while. The state of OH required a physical for all commercial drivers, even ones not driving commercial vehicles. The STATE required I get a physical to drive a van for UPS. I'm sure other fields have similar requirements for safty reasons.
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  • keast

    Posts: 9

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    2012-01-16 3-24-37-

    What is your field? There are many fields where the work could involve some safety issues for the employee or others were they susceptible to a variety of physical impairments. Someone else gave some good examples - pilots, drivers, surgeons. But there are many others where the employer has a legitimate concern for the physical condition of the people they employ to do certain jobs, and it might not be so obvious. On the other hand, if your physical requires more than three breast examinations, I think you might have cause for suspicion.
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