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Can you appeal the findings of a discrimination investigation?

If you report employment discrimination and don’t agree with the findings of the agency that makes the decision, you might be able to appeal the issue to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. If you aren’t sure if your case can be appealed, then consulting with a lawyer well-versed in employment law is often a good idea.

The EEOC accepts appeals within 30 days of a final order from a lower decision maker. The EEOC states that it bases the date on the appeal filing on the postmark for mailed appeals. Shorter appeals — those that are less than 10 pages in length — can be faxed directly to the EEOC appeals office.

The EEOC has a specific form for appeals, called the Notice of Appeal/Petition or Form 573. This form must be used to make your appeal, and you can also support the petition with a further statement, though this is not required. In some cases, you can file the petition and request additional time to send the statement. This can be important if you are still working to gather information to support your appeal. Most EEOC appeals reviews do not consider evidence that wasn’t presented at the original hearing or trial, though.

If you win an appeal with the EEOC and the original agency does not follow through with the relief awarded by the EEOC, you can request that the Commission step in to enforce its orders. The EEOC usually provides a time period in which the original agency must comply and you do have to wait until that time period is up before asking for further assistance.

Source: Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, “Appeals,” accessed May 13, 2016

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