How Immigrants Can File An Employment Discrimination Charge — Part VIII

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Frequently Asked Questions

#MondayLawSeries

Filing an employment discrimination charge is not an easy task. You may be nervous and scared of the whole process. But you need not to worry because the law protects you. And it’s your right to be treated fairly in the workplace.

Last week, we provided a step by step guideline on how to fill Out an employment discrimination charge form.

The whole process can be overwhelming, and you’d need answers to several questions.

Here are the answers to some questions you may have.

  1. Must I Provide All Information Required? What If I Can’t Provide All The Information?

It’s okay if you don’t have all the information required to fill the charge form.

The important thing is to file an employment discrimination charge within 180 days of noticing an unfair treatment in your workplace.

However, if you were unable to provide all the information required, you must do so within 45 days of filling the charge form.

In situations where you experience any difficulty in getting the information, you should call the OSC staff for assistance.

As a general rule of thumb, you should provide as much information as you can.

  1. How To Send Your Charge Form

This is pretty easy; you can contact OSC office or check out their website for more information.

It’s important to note that all charges have to be sent within 180 days from the day your employer discriminated against you.

  1. Can A Non-English speaking Immigrant Call The OSC?

Yes!

Non-English African immigrants can call the OSC — whatever languages you speak, call the OSC, and a translator will be around to help in the communication process — you won’t pay for the translation services.

  1. Can I Relocate After Filing A Charge?

Yes!

You can change your location after filing a charge.

However, you’d have to inform the OSC of your relocation plan or contact the agency immediately after relocation.

If you don’t handle the process correctly, you may lose your claims, and your charge would be rendered invalid.

  1. What’s The Investigation Process Like?

First, the OSC would notify you after receiving your charge form. After that, your employer will be contacted within 10 days, and the investigation process will begin.

During the investigation, your employer would be required to provide relevant documents.

As a rule of thumb, you should be thoroughly prepared and gather relevant evidence that would help you win your case — reliable witnesses, documents, and other forms of proof would come in handy.

Also, the OSC attorney would meet you or give you a call to discuss the issue. In situations like this, you can hire an attorney (or advocate) to guide you through the entire process.

According to the law, the OSC has to investigate your claim within 120 days — but an extra 90 days may be needed in some cases.

During this period, your case can either be dismissed or a lawsuit will be filed on your behalf.

Most times, if your case is confirmed, and your discrimination claims are found to be true, the OSC would try to settle the case with your employer.

How does the OSC settle a case? Must a lawyer represent you during the filing process? And what happens when the OSC decides NOT to file a charge?

Answers to these questions will be provided next week.

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