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Four Tips for California Employers Facing an EEOC Investigation

eeoc.jpgThe Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is the agency responsible for enforcing federal laws on employment discrimination. If your company is facing an investigation from the EEOC, it is imperative that you take the situation seriously. One of the biggest mistakes employers make is waiting until a lawsuit is filed to take action. As soon as you receive notice that your business is being investigated by the EEOC, you need to contact an experienced San Jose employment law attorney.

1. Know the Situation

An investigation means your company is facing an inquiry into its practices. But what practices? When the EEOC conducts an investigation, it is doing so with a purpose. The agency is seeking to answer some specific questions. You need to know what, if any, legal violations are being alleged. Only when you understand the true nature and scope of the investigation will you be able to properly prepare for it and respond to it.

2. Prepare a Position Statement

When the EEOC begins its investigation, it will ask for input from both the employer and the complaining party (usually a current or former employee). For employers, the best way to provide input is through a carefully-drafted position statement. In this statement, your company should respond specifically and factually to any and all allegations that have been raised. It is strongly advised the businesses seek legal assistance to prepare this statement.

3. Negotiate the Scope of Discovery

When EEOC officials actually begin to seek documents and records from your business, they may make extremely broad requests. Business owners and managers should be aware of the fact that they have some ability to try to negotiate the scope of the discovery in their case. By working with the EEOC through negotiation, you may be able to narrow the scope of discovery, eliminating requests for wholly irrelevant documents, thereby saving money for your business and accelerating the investigation.

4. Consider Mediation

In some cases, mediation will be the best available option for employers. The EEOC may even expressly propose mediation to facilitate dispute resolution. When this happens, your company needs to carefully consider the mediation offer. Whether or not mediation is appropriate will always depend on the individual facts of the case at hand. While certainly not right for all claims, mediation does sometimes produce huge savings of both time and money.

Contact Our California Employer Defense Lawyers Today

At Diemer, Whitman & Cardosi, LLP, our skilled San Jose employment law attorneys represent California employers in complex employment law cases. If your business is being sued for discrimination by a current or former employee, we can help. For a free case evaluation, please contact our office today. We serve clients throughout the Bay Area, including in San Francisco, Mountain View, Palo Alto, Oakland, and Alameda.



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