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What Can Employers Expect After a Discrimination Complaint?

what-can-employers-expect-after-a-discrimination complaint florida lawyerI’m attorney Reed Bloodworth, managing partner of Bloodworth Law in Orlando, Florida. We handle employment litigation across the state for businesses and individuals.

I’ll walk you through the basics of what employers can expect after a discrimination complaint. If you’re watching this video, you’re probably already in crisis mode looking for answers. So let’s look at some typical situations.

Discrimination Complaint? Get an Attorney

First, you’re going to call an attorney like me about the looming disaster, which is the discrimination complaint.

Where Was Complaint Filed?

Next, where was the discrimination complaint filed by the employee? Was it filed with the EEOC  — which is the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission?

Was it filed internally with HR at your company? Or was it filed through a state or county organization like the Florida Commission on Human Rights? In any case, the process is generally going to be the same.

Discrimination and Harassment Process Similar

Overall, the process is very similar for employers whether it’s a discrimination complaint or if it’s a harassment complaint filed. We’ll use the EEOC as the example.

The EEOC enforces federal laws that make discrimination illegal against job applicants or employees due to:

  • Disability
  • National origin
  • Religion
  • Age
  • Genetic information 
  • Race
  • Color 
  • Sex
  • Gender Identity
  • Sexual orientation
  • Pregnancy

This entire process involved in a discrimination complaint can last for a couple of months or as long as several years depending on:

  1. How enthusiastic is the agency about pursuing it?
  2. How big is the case?
  3. How complicated is the case?
  4. How strong is the case?
  5. The individual personalities and initiative of the investigator assigned.
  6. Let’s take a look at the next steps:
  7. The employee files a complaint and you’ll hire an attorney to answer the complaint.
  8. The EEOC will get your statement and interview witnesses.
  9. The EEOC may request additional documents from you.
  10. The EEOC will send your statement to your employee.
  11. The EEOC may move forward with the case against your company.
  12. Or, if the EEOC doesn’t move forward, the employee may instead bring a private lawsuit.

Do You Have Current Policy?

A worst-case scenario is when you call us and tell us that you don’t have discrimination or a harassment policy or that you don’t know what it is.

Be prepared. Talk with an attorney to get your employee policies updated.

Again, I’m attorney Reed Bloodworth, managing partner of Bloodworth Law in Florida. Let’s talk about how Bloodworth Law can help you or your business.