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Filing a Complaint

You can file a formal job discrimination complaint with the EEOC whenever you believe you are:

  • Being treated unfairly on the job because of your race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, gender identity, and sexual orientation), national origin, disability, age (age 40 or older) or genetic information; or
  • Being harassed at work for any of these reasons; or
  • Being treated unfairly or harassed because you complained about job discrimination, or assisted with a job discrimination investigation or lawsuit.

This complaint is called a "Charge of Discrimination." All of the laws we enforce, except for the Equal Pay Act, require you to file a Charge of Discrimination with us before you can file a job discrimination lawsuit against your employer.

There are strict time limits for filing a job discrimination complaint with the EEOC. In some cases, you only have 180 days to report discrimination to EEOC. You have 300 days if your complaint is also covered by a state or local anti-discrimination law. You should contact us immediately if you believe your employer is discriminating against you. We can help you determine whether your job complaint is within the correct time limit or whether another organization can help you.

If you believe you have been discriminated against or harassed at work by a federal government employer, you must follow different procedures. For information on how the process works, see the guidelines for Federal Sector Equal Employment Opportunity Complaint Processing.