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CM-601 Introduction




PURPOSE.  This transmittal forwards EEOC Order 915.002, which revised those parts of EEOC Order 915, EEOC Compliance Manual, dated January 26, 1979, pertaining to Volume II, Interpretations. No revisions have been made to individual sections of Volume II.

ORIGINATOR.  Coordination and Guidance Services, Office of Legal Counsel.

EFFECTIVE DATE.  May 3, 1991

DISTRIBUTION.  EEOC Compliance Manual Holders.


OBSOLETE DATA AND FILING INSTRUCTIONS.  The attached EEOC Order 915.002 supersedes EEOC Order 915, dated January 26, 1979, as it pertains to Volume II, Interpretations" EEOC Order 915.002 should be filed before the List of Sections preceding Section 601 of Volume II.






Thomasina V. Rogers
Legal Counsel



EEOC Compliance Manual

Volume II



EEOC Order 915.002



(Complete Compliance Manual with updates through December 1, 1991)



Washington, D.C. 20507                                              

May 3, 1991




  2. PURPOSE. This Order prescribes EEOC Compliance Manual, Volume II, Interpretations Manual, which serves primarily as a reference source interpreting the laws administered and enforced by the Commission and providing substantive legal guidance on various issues arising under these laws based on Commission policy and decisions and on case law. The Interpretations Manual also serves as an investigative aid, providing guidance in analyzing and investigating allegations of unlawful employment discrimination in charges and complaints presented to the Commission. The guidance provided pursuant to this Order is issued in the form of individual sections of Volume II and separate Commission policy documents relating to and supplementing matters discussed in specific sections. Following initial issuance, Commission policy documents are subsequently incorporated as appendices to the pertinent sections of Volume II.
  3. EFFECTIVE DATE, May 3, 1991
  4. ORIGINATOR. Coordination and Guidance Services, Office of Legal Counsel.
    1. The provisions of this Order apply to each local, area, field, district, and headquarters office.
    2. Modifications of and deviations from the established guidance and procedures set forth in this Order are not authorized unless necessitated by intervening legal developments affecting the continued validity of existing Volume II guidance and precedents. Where such modifications or deviations are necessary, they must be cleared with and approved by the Office of Legal Counsel. Offices may, however, establish standard operating procedures and other written guidance to complement EEOC Compliance Manual, Volume II, provided that such written guidance does not otherwise conflict with the provisions of this Order. Such written guidance shall be published as office supplements, with copies forwarded to the Office of Legal Counsel and the Office of Program Operations.

DISTRIBUTION: Compliance Manual Holders



    1. The Legal Counsel is responsible for planning and directing, in consultation with the Offices of Program Operations, General Counsel, Federal Operations, and other appropriate offices, the development, maintenance, updating, and revision of the substantive and procedural provisions of this Order.
    2. The Director of the Office of Program Operations, the General Counsel, and the Directors of the Office of Federal Operations and other appropriate offices are responsible for reviewing proposed Volume II sections and Commission policy documents supplementing Volume II sections and for recommending revisions, additions, and deletions, as appropriate, to both existing and proposed sections and policy documents.
    3. District and other field office directors are responsible for reviewing proposed Volume II sections and for recommending revisions, additions, and deletions, as appropriate, to both existing and proposed sections. District and other field office directors are also responsible for reviewing Commission policy documents following their issuance by the Commission and prior to their incorporation into Volume II as appendices to the various sections.
    4. District directors and all other office directors are responsible for ensuring that all employees adhere to the policies and procedures prescribed by this Order. All district and other office directors are also responsible for reporting any difficulties experienced in implementing these policies and procedures to the Office of Legal Counsel, as well as for making recommendations and suggestions concerning new or improved policies and procedures.
    5. Office heads are responsible for ensuring that copies of this Order distributed to their offices are kept up to date by reviewing on a monthly basis EEOC Notices in the N-205 series, which are monthly listings of EEOC publications released during the preceding month, and for supervising the public inspection and copying of this Order in their offices.
    1. The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requires that Volume II of the Compliance Manual, in its entirety, be made available for public inspection and copying. The various sections of Volume II, together with the policy documents supplementing these sections, come within the FOIA provisions mandating availability for inspection and copying of "those statements of policy and interpretations which have been adopted by the agency and are not published in the Federal Register" and "administrative staff manuals and instructions to staff that affect a member of the public." See 5 U.S.C. Section 552(a)(2)(b) and (c).
    2. In order to allow maximum access to the public, one complete Volume II shall be made available in each local, area, field, and district office and in the public reading area of the Commission's library in Washington, D.C. Although Manual holders may allow public inspection of the Volume II that is assigned to them, it is recommended that one specific copy be made available in each local, area, field, and district office library. Local, area, field, and district directors may designate one copy by labeling the volume on the binder edge with the words: "Library Copy for Public Inspection."
    3. Supplements to the provisions of this Order published in accordance with EEOC Order 205.001 and paragraph 5(b) of this Order must also be made available to the public.
    4. Photocopies of individual pages or sections are to be provided to the public on request in accordance with the price list contained in Section 1610.15 of the Commission's FOIA Regulations, 29 C.F.R. Section 1610.15. Fees for copying are to be collected and accounted for in accordance with EEOC Order 471, Collection Procedures for Funds Due the United States.
    5. Draft Volume II materials sent to office heads for comment are not to be included in the published copy made available to the public for inspection.
    1. Each office head shall ensure that the office receives and maintains a sufficient number of copies of Volume II to meet the needs of office staff.
    2. A complete copy of Volume II shall be assigned and/or made available to each local, area, field, and district office investigator, supervisor, and attorney and to appropriate headquarters staff.
    3. Each time a Directives Transmittal entitled "EEOC Compliance Manual, Volume II" is issued, a sufficient number of transmittals and materials covered by the transmittal shall be automatically distributed by the Office of Management to each office based on that office's completed EEOC Form 203, Initial Distribution of Directives, prepared and submitted in accordance with EEOC Order 205.001, Appendix E, paragraph 2c. If an insufficient number is received or if a review of EEOC Notices in the N-205 series discloses an issuance that has not been received by an office, that office shall request additional copies in accordance with EEOC Order 205.001, Appendix E, paragraph 2e, from the Library Management Branch, Resource Management Division.
    4. Volume II holders should comply with the obsolete data instructions on each Directives Transmittal they receive entitled "EEOC Compliance Manual, Volume II." After complying with the obsolete data instructions, the Directives Transmittal should be initialed and dated below the transmittal number and date blocks and should be filed behind this Order so that the most recent Directives Transmittal is uppermost. Upon receipt of each Directives Transmittal that makes changes to this Order, office heads and supervisors shall ensure that all copies of this Order assigned to that office are properly posted and current.
    5. Policy documents providing current guidance on specific issues and relating to and supplementing matters addressed in particular Volume II sections will be issued periodically as EEOC Notices in the N-915 series. As an exception to EEOC Order 205.001, Appendix B, Attachment 4, Section a(5), these notices will remain in effect until rescinded or superseded. Until a policy document is incorporated into Volume II as an appendix to a specific section, it should be filed with the section to which it pertains in accordance with the instructions provided in the notice.
  4. ACCESSIBILITY TO INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES. Upon request, a copy of Volume II or specific sections thereof shall be made available to an individual with a disability in an accessible format meeting the individual's needs by the Office of Equal Employment Opportunity in accordance with the provisions of EEOC Order 560.004, Accessible Information Policy, unless that office determines that the document requested is too voluminous and presents an undue hardship to produce on audiotape or in another accessible format.
  5. APPENDIX. A list of the current and proposed future sections of Volume II is appended to this Order as Appendix A.
  6. OBSOLETE DATA. This Order supersedes those parts of EEOC Order 915, EEOC Compliance Manual, dated January 26, 1979, pertaining to Volume II, Interpretations.






Thomesina V. Rogers
Legal Counsel