Filing a Complaint for Employment Discrimination
At the DFEH
If you are an employee or a job applicant who believes that you have been harassed or unfavorably treated in your workplace, you may file a complaint alleging discrimination with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH). The DFEH will initially try to help you and your employer arrive at an amicable resolution of your case. Should you and your employer fail to settle your issues, the DFEH may file a civil complaint on your behalf and seek appropriate court orders to address the alleged acts of discrimination.
In Court or Arbitration
You may also decide to pursue the case through a lawsuit in civil court or in arbitration (as applicable), but you will still have to file a complaint with the DFEH and obtain a Right-to-Sue Notice before instituting the civil case or arbitration through your own counsel. Filing a lawsuit in California state court or initiating a demand in private arbitration allows you to seek compensatory damages and attorney’s fees beyond the cap set by federal discrimination litigation laws.
While a complaint filed at the DFEH may lead to a recovery of damages from the respondent employer, the DFEH in that situation acts as an objective fact-finder and does not represent the interests of the affected employee, nor will the DFEH act as the employee’s counsel. Depending on the findings of the DFEH, it may ultimately decide not to pursue a discrimination complaint against the respondent employer, potentially depriving the affected employee of legal protection against discrimination or harassment at work. If you believe that you have been unfavorably treated or subjected to harassment because of your disability, pregnancy, race, color, sex, sexual orientation, religion, or other protected category, having an experienced discrimination litigation attorney by your side can improve your chances of obtaining the relief you need and deserve.
Deadline for Filing Complaint
Filing your complaint regarding employment discrimination on time is vital to your claims. To preserve your right to file a civil lawsuit against your employer, you must file a complaint with the DFEH within one (1) year from the time that you feel you were unfavorably treated or harassed. The one (1) year period will not be interrupted by any action that you take internally with your employer through the established grievance procedure. In many cases, the DFEH may not take action on a complaint that is filed beyond the one-year period, which is also known as the Statute of Limitations for employment discrimination complaints.
You also have one year from the date of issuance of a Right-to-Sue Notice within which to file your civil complaint in a California court or to initiate your demand in private arbitration (if applicable). Take immediate action by consulting an experienced discrimination litigation attorney immediately about your situation. Your lawyer can provide you with appropriate legal advice and ensure that you file your complaint timely.
Benefits of a Discrimination Litigation Attorney
An experienced discrimination litigation attorney can help by:
- Gathering all information relevant to your case
- Applying the appropriate legal provisions to your case in a compelling manner
- Apply rules of evidence to ensure that your evidence is admitted in court and in appropriate cases, to exclude inadmissible evidence that your employer may try to introduce during trial
- Maximizing the economic damages that you can receive
Consulting a Los Angeles Discrimination Litigation Attorney
Experiencing discrimination at work can be tough for many employees. The unfavorable treatment often spreads to their personal lives, affecting their ability to take care of themselves and their families. Many of our clients who suffered from employment discrimination have come to us with their lives having gone in a completely different direction. At Mehtani Law Offices, we find it rewarding to be of help to clients suffering from discriminatory acts at work and to be able to prevent the destruction of personal lives and relationships as a result.
If you have been the victim of discrimination because you are disabled, pregnant, or due to your sex, race, color, religion, or other protected category, we invite you to call us today at (213) 291-6900 or toll-free at (844) 501-6690 to schedule a free initial consultation with one of our compassionate discrimination litigation attorneys.