If you believe that your employing agency has unlawfully discriminated against you because of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, genetic history, or pregnancy in the workplace, then filing an informal Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) complaint with your agency may be the best course of action. With a successful informal EEO complaint Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) mediation, you can resolve your claim without ever having to file a formal EEO complaint.
However, it is crucial that you understand how to properly and effectively litigate an informal EEO complaint to ensure that your rights and federal career are best protected.
Provide a Detailed Description of the Discriminatory Action
First, when filing an informal EEO complaint, you must describe the discriminatory action taken against you. This means that you will need to include as much information as possible about what happened and why it was discriminatory. This can include dates of any events related to the discrimination, names of anyone involved in the incident, and other pertinent information.
When preparing this description, an experienced federal employment EEO claims attorney can help you work through this process, and best format your evidence for your informal EEO complaint to support your claims.
Be Prepared to Document Your Claim
When filing an informal EEO complaint, you should also be prepared to document your claim to the extent necessary. This means you should have all the supporting evidence and records relevant to your case ready before going into the ADR mediation process. This may include documents such as emails, memos, letters, or any other evidence that supports your claim, which you have lawfully obtained.
By being prepared with all relevant materials needed to support your claim, you will be able to present a professional and thorough argument when litigating your complaint.
Contact An EEO Counselor
To pursue your informal EEO claim, you must contact an EEO Counselor at your employing agency within 45 calendar days of the effective date of any concrete personnel action or act of severe and repeated harassment you want to complain about. The counselor will help you navigate the informal complaint process, which involves exchanging information between yourself and your employer to reach a resolution.
The initial interview with an EEO Counselor is essential, as it is the first step in processing your informal EEO complaint. During this meeting, you should be ready to provide evidence and a detailed explanation of the discriminatory actions taken against you. The EEO counselor will either give you the option of pursuing traditional EEO counseling or engaging in ADR mediation before the end of the 90-day informal EEO counseling period. From there, you can seek to settle your claims, else you will need to file a formal EEO complaint against your federal agency within 15 calendar days of receiving the Agency’s Notice of Right to File a Formal EEO Complaint.
Defending Your Rights & Federal Career
If you have an informal EEO complaint, it is essential that you consult an experienced federal employment attorney to guide you through this process even before you initiate contact with an agency EEO counselor. They can assist you and craft an effective informal EEO complaint, a reasonable settlement offer, and provide representation and guidance throughout the informal EEO complaint ADR process.
At The Law Firm of John P. Mahoney, Esq., Attorneys at Law, PLLC, our top-rated, award-winning federal employment attorneys are well-versed in representing our federal employee clients through their informal EEO complaints. Schedule a consultation today by calling our firm at (202) 350-3881.