Can I Sue My Employer for Racial Bias?
Under the Civil Rights Act, it is illegal for your employer to engage in any type of racial bias in the workplace. Despite this, many people still experience racial discrimination in the course of their employment. However, the same law that makes racial bias illegal prevents you from suing your employer for engaging in that practice.
If you have been the victim of racial bias, your first step is to file a claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The EEOC will review your situation and advise you of the strengths and weaknesses of your claim. If you decide to continue with your claim, the EEOC will try to stop your employer from engaging in illegal practices, and attempt to mediate between you and your employer.
Only if these efforts are unsuccessful does a lawsuit become an option. The EEOC may decide to file a lawsuit against your employer on your behalf. If they decide not to do so, they will instead provide you with a “Notice of Right to Sue.” This gives you authorization to file a lawsuit against your employer.
Many states have also passed anti-discrimination laws, and some of these states allow you to sue your employer before submitting a claim. It is always a good idea to consult with a lawyer if you have been subjected to racial bias. An experienced attorney can advise you whether you should pursue your claim under federal or state law.
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Last Modified: 06-07-2012 03:59 PM PDT