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Washington DC Federal Discrimination Attorney

Discrimination continues to plague our workplaces across the country and federal agencies in the District of Columbia are no exception. Discrimination causes significant harm by denying people compensation, benefits, and promotions they have earned. In other instances, employees may be unable to perform due to harassment and bullying or may be retaliated against for complaining about discrimination in their workplace. If you are a federal employee who has been the victim of discrimination, contact Washington DC federal discrimination attorney J.W. Stafford to discuss your case and your options. 

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Federal Law Protects You Against Discrimination

Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act is a federal law that prohibits discrimination in the workplace. This law, together with federal regulations, protects you from being discriminated against on the following bases: 

Other federal laws prohibit discrimination based on the following: 

Together, these laws protect federal employees and those who are seeking a federal job. It prohibits all discriminatory practices and actions related to employment, including job assignments, promotions, discipline, compensation, benefits, hiring, and firing. Unfortunately, discrimination isn’t always easy to identify, as many federal agencies will attempt to justify their actions through some seemingly valid explanation. Nevertheless, if you believe you have been discriminated against, a Washington DC federal discrimination attorney can review your case and determine whether you have a claim. 

Who Is Protected?

Federal anti-discrimination laws apply to all federal agencies across the country, including the District of Columbia. This includes the following: 

  • Federal job applicants
  • Current federal employees
  • Former federal employees
  • Part-time federal employees

No matter your status, you have a right to be free from discrimination when applying to or working at a federal agency. If you believe that you have experienced workplace discrimination, an experienced Washington DC federal discrimination attorney can review your case and determine whether you have a claim. 

A Washington DC Federal Discrimination Attorney Who Knows How to Navigate the EEO Claims Process 

If you have been discriminated against, there is a specific process that must be followed. First, it is important to understand that you must file an informal complaint with the EEO Counselor at your agency within 45 days, or you may lose all your rights. Determining when the 45-day time period starts and ends is more complicated than you might think, so we recommend that you contact a lawyer as soon as possible. 

  • The informal stage lasts for a period of 30 days unless you choose to proceed through the EEOC’s Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) mediation program. Mediation will extend this period an additional 60 days. If you are able to resolve the issue during this time period, all parties will sign and agree to be bound by a written settlement agreement. 
  • If you cannot resolve the issue during the informal proceedings, the agency’s EEO office will issue a Right to File a Formal EEO Complaint. Your complaint must be filed within 15 days of receiving the notice. 
  • Once a formal complaint is filed, the agency has up to 180 days to investigate your claim, gather evidence, and ultimately prepare a Report of Investigation. At that point, you may request a hearing before an EEOC administrative law judge or you may ask that the agency issue a decision. Either party may appeal decisions of the EEOC. Because of the complexity of these cases, the complaint process may take longer than 180 days and often up to two years to be fully resolved. 
  • You may opt-out of the EEOC administrative process within 90 days after receiving a final EEOC decision or after your formal complaint has been pending for more than 180 days. At that point, you may file a civil lawsuit in federal district court. 

Understanding how to navigate the claim process, what to expect, and when is the right time to pursue a lawsuit is critical to the success of your claim. Non-lawyers can quickly get lost in the process, and even a simple mistake can jeopardize your rights. 

Contact Experienced and Respected Attorney J.W. Stafford Today

Every federal worker has the right to fair employment. If you have been discriminated against, we can help. Call us today at 410-514-6099 or complete our online contact form to discuss your case and what we can do to protect your rights.