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Commission Votes: Glossary of Commonly Used Terms

Commissioner Charge

Pursuant to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000e-5 and 2000e-6, and related procedural regulations set forth at 29 C.F.R. § 1601.11, Commissioners have the authority to issue charges of discrimination. When a Commissioner issues a charge of discrimination, it is in writing, signed by the Commissioner, and verified.

Federal Sector Appellate Decisions

Federal sector appellate decisions are written decisions that set forth the EEOC's decision on an individual's appeal. Only certain federal sector appellate decisions are voted on by the Commission.

Federal sector decisions are randomly assigned pseudonyms which replace the Complainant's name when the decision is published to the Commission's website. In some federal sector appeals the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is both the respondent agency and the adjudicatory authority. 

Litigation Recommendation

In certain instances, the Commission may bring a civil action against an employer named in a charge of discrimination. Certain types of litigation require a Commission vote. Litigation recommendations are proposals, submitted by the General Counsel, for Commission approval to commence or intervene in litigation.

Notice of Rescission

Guidance documents, which were originally adopted by Commission vote, can be rescinded only by Commission vote and approval, for example, because the document no longer reflects the current state of the law. 

Petition to Revoke or Modify a Subpoena

Pursuant to the EEOC's procedural regulations, any person served with an EEOC subpoena who intends not to comply shall petition to seek the subpoena's revocation or modification.  29 C.F.R. § 1601.16(b). When a petition to revoke or modify a subpoena is submitted to the EEOC, the Commission votes on the EEOC's determination on the petition to revoke or modify a subpoena.

Recommendation to Participate as Amicus Curiae

In order for the General Counsel to submit an amicus brief, also known as a "friend of the court" brief, in a case in which the Commission is not a party, a recommendation to participate as amicus curiae must be voted on and approved by the Commission.

Request for Hardship Exemption EEO Survey

The EEOC collects workforce data from certain employers Pursuant to regulation, if an employer claims that the preparation or filing of an EEO report/survey would create under hardship, the employer may apply to the Commission for an exemption from the requirement to file the EEO report.