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What to do when an employee files an EEOC Charge of Discrimination

October 19, 2023

In today’s business landscape, small businesses are the backbone of the economy, driving innovation, creating jobs, and fostering vibrant communities. However, managing a small business comes with its own set of challenges, one of which is dealing with potential legal issues, including Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charges of discrimination. When your company is faced with the prospect of an employee filing or having already filed an EEOC charge, it can be a daunting and complex situation to handle.

The employee can twist virtually any employment situation into an EEOC Charge of Discrimination. But fear not! An EEOC Charge of Discrimination is not a lawsuit. It’s an administrative charge meant to be investigated prior to a lawsuit being filed, and as the employer you can defend yourself. The burden is on the employee to prove discrimination or retaliation for complaining about discrimination occurred.

The most common allegation we hear employees complain about is “race discrimination”. If you believe the employee is wrong, you should focus on the legitimate business rationales for making employment decisions, regardless of how the employees may construe the situation. As long as your business decisions are nondiscriminatory, you can use real evidence (text messages, emails, discipline records, witness statements, Teams chat messages, etc.) to prove no discrimination occurred. If you’re a manager or HR professional, you should make sure that any business decisions and the underlying reasons for those decisions are well documented.

  1. Understanding the EEOC Charge:

An EEOC charge is a formal complaint made by an employee alleging workplace discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, or genetic information. It is a serious matter that needs to be addressed promptly and effectively.

After the employee files an EEOC Charge, the case either goes to mediation or investigation:

  1. The Stakes for Small Businesses:

For small businesses, EEOC charges can be particularly burdensome. Even though they’re confidential at the administrative phase, the potential consequences include legal expenses, damage to your company’s reputation, and, in some cases, substantial financial penalties. It’s crucial to act swiftly and correctly.

  1. Why Pietrucha Law Firm:

So, why should your small business consider hiring our firm when faced with an EEOC charge?

Expertise: Our team of legal experts specializes in employment law and has extensive experience in handling EEOC charges. We understand the nuances of these cases and can provide effective solutions tailored to your unique situation.

Mitigating Risks: We will work with you to assess the merits of the EEOC charge and develop a strategic plan to mitigate potential risks. Our goal is to protect your business and minimize any potential damage.

Compliance and Prevention: In addition to resolving ongoing issues, we can assist in establishing effective workplace policies and procedures that comply with EEOC regulations. Preventing discrimination is the best way to avoid EEOC charges in the first place.

Reputation Management: We understand the importance of your business’s reputation. We will help you handle the situation discreetly and professionally to minimize negative impact on your brand.

Cost-Efficiency: We recognize that small businesses have limited resources. Our services are designed to be cost-effective while delivering high-quality legal counsel and representation.

  1. The Road Ahead from an EEOC Charge:

When an EEOC charge is filed against your small business, you don’t have to face it alone. Our firm is ready to provide the support, guidance, and expertise you need to navigate this challenging terrain successfully. Remember, swift and informed action can make all the difference in protecting your business and ensuring a fair resolution. EEOC charges can be a formidable challenge for small businesses, but with the right legal support, you can emerge stronger on the other side. By partnering with our firm, you gain access to the expertise and experience needed to handle EEOC charges effectively and safeguard your business’s future. Don’t let legal challenges threaten your small business; choose our team of experts to guide you through the process and protect what you’ve worked so hard to build.

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1717 N Naper Blvd Suite 200, Naperville, IL 60563