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Appeals

You have the right to appeal an agency's final order (including a final order dismissing your complaint) to EEOC's Office of Federal Operations. You must file your appeal no later than 30 days after you receive the final order. If you send your appeal by mail, the date postmarked by the U.S. Postal Service is the date we use as the day your appeal was filed.

Where to send your appeal or statement supporting or opposing an appeal

You should mail your appeal or statement supporting or opposing an appeal to:

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Office of Federal Operations
P.O. Box 77960
Washington, D.C. 20013

If your appeal or statement is 10 pages or less, you can fax it to the Office of Federal Operations at (202) 663-7022.

You can also hand-deliver your appeal to:

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Office of Federal Operations
131 M Street, N.E.
Washington, D.C. 20507

You must give a copy of your appeal to the agency and certify how and when you delivered this copy to the agency.

Form used to file the appeal

To file your appeal, you should use EEOC Form 573, Notice of Appeal/Petition. This form is located at Appendix K to the EEOC's Management Directive 110 and is available on the EEOC's web site at http://www.eeoc.gov/federal/md110/appendixk.html.

Submitting a statement either supporting or opposing an appeal

You are not required to send a statement in support of (or opposition of) an appeal, but you can if you want to. If you do decide to send a statement, you must do so within 30 days of the day you file your appeal or, if it is a statement opposing an appeal, within 30 days from the day you receive a statement in support of appeal from the other party to the case. If you send your statement by mail, the date postmarked by the U.S. Postal Service is the date we use as the day your statement was filed.

If you need more time to send us your statement, you can ask for more time in writing. Your request must be sent (postmarked or faxed and received) before the 30 days pass. In your request, you should describe why you need more time. You may fax your request for more time to the Office of Federal Operations at (202) 663-7022.

How EEOC decides an appeal

EEOC lawyers review the entire file, including the agency's investigation, the decision of the Administrative Judge, the transcript of what was said at the hearing (if there was a hearing), and any timely statements submitted by the parties to the appeal. If there was a hearing, the facts decided by the Administrative Judge are taken as correct, unless the record clearly shows that the Administrative Judge made a mistake.

As a general rule, EEOC will not consider new evidence on appeal unless you can show that the evidence was not reasonably available when the agency's decision was made.  

Most appellate decisions are issued by EEOC's Office of Federal Operations (OFO). In some instances, such as when a case presents an issue not previously decided by the EEOC, the Commission will issue a decision.  Whether issued by OFO or by the Commissioners, the appellate decision represents EEOC's official position on the matter decided. Official dissenting opinions are not issued.

How to find out the status of my appeal?

If you want to find out the status of your appeal, contact our Office of Federal Operations at (202) 663-4599. Please have your eight-digit EEOC appeal number when you call to make it easier for us to serve you.

When the agency does not follow EEOC's decision on appeal

In most cases, agencies must give you the relief awarded within the time frame ordered by EEOC in its decision on appeal. If the agency fails to give relief within these time frames, you can either file a petition for enforcement with EEOC or file a lawsuit in court for enforcement of the award.

If the agency fails to follow an EEOC appeal decision, you can send a petition for enforcement to:

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Office of Federal Operations
131 M Street, N.E.
Washington, D.C. 20507

There is one exception to this general rule. An agency does not have to provide the relief awarded by an Administrative Judge or EEOC on appeal while the agency's appeal of that award is being decided by EEOC. In such cases, if the agency loses its appeal, the agency will generally have to pay you interest on any money you are entitled to as part of the award.