The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is a federal agency that ensures the rights of individuals in the workplace are not violated. It takes discrimination charges very seriously and investigates each one thoroughly. After consulting a discrimination attorney in New Jersey and filing an EEOC charge, you should know what steps to take next. In this article, you’ll learn about those steps.
1. Keep All Documents Related To Your Case
You must keep all documents related to your case and provide them to your attorney or investigator if requested by the EEOC staff. Such documents include;
- a) Any employment documents, such as job offers, termination letters, or performance reviews.
- b) Receipts for any gifts you gave someone else at work, including flowers, cards, and lunches.
- c) Letters of complaints to your supervisor or higher management about harassment from another employee.
- d) Emails where the subject line includes words like “harassment” or “retaliation.”
2. Don’t Retaliate
It would be best not to retaliate against an employee or applicant who files a charge of discrimination. You could be liable for damages if you do so. For example, the EEOC may sue your company and employees to recover money from those retaliating in violation of Title VII, including compensatory and punitive damages as well as attorney’s fees and litigation costs. If one of your managers is found guilty of violating this rule, it can cost up to $100,000 per case.
The law does provide some exceptions that allow employers to take action when they have apparent evidence that somebody has engaged in unlawful activity—such as destruction of property.
3. Make A Witness List
The EEOC will ask you to provide a list of witnesses that can attest to the discrimination. This witness list needs to have as many people on it as possible, even if they witnessed something from afar or only saw one instance out of multiple instances. Do your best here: every name is another person who may help prove your case.
You’ll need to get all your witnesses’ contact information and ensure they’re available for interviews. You might want somebody in there with an unbiased perspective who didn’t experience any harassment themselves but can testify about what happened elsewhere in the workplace (like at meetings).
If anything else comes up during interviews with other employees, take notes of what they say, and be honest if you think it is relevant. Generally speaking, the EEOC will not penalize a company for something an employee is accused of doing. Still, if there are specific allegations, you can investigate and substantiate them because the EEOC may pursue them.
4. Contact A Labor and Employment Lawyer
If you are still unsure what to do or if the situation is complicated, contact an attorney specializing in employment law. This way, they can help you understand your rights and determine the best course of action for moving forward.
It’s essential to stay on top of any changes with federal legislation, which is why it’s a great idea to read more about the EEOC process.
A labor and employment lawyer will make it easy for you to understand the process of your EEOC discrimination charge. They’ll tell you the options you have for handling your case: in court or via settlement negotiations.
5. Review The Charge Notice Carefully
Remember that the EEOC is a federal agency, and they’re not going to investigate your complaint if you don’t give them all of the information. You should always review any notice carefully before signing it because there may be minor details about what you need to do next included in the document.
Furthermore, this will ensure that there are no errors on their part so that your case does not get dismissed for lack of evidence or something as simple as spelling mistakes.
The Bottom Line
If you receive an EEOC charge, you should follow the EEOC’s guidelines to provide a written response. You are not required by law to respond, but it is recommended to help prevent misunderstandings and lawsuits in some instances. These tips can also make the process easier for you.
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