A Right to Sue letter gives you permission by the Equal Employment Opportunities Commission (EEOC) to file a lawsuit in the federal court. When the EEOC issues you with a Right to Sue letter, it is stating that it has done everything possible to solve your discrimination claim and it believes you have a chance to win if you file your own lawsuit for compensation.
You need a Right to Sue letter for filing most kinds of employment discrimination cases but not for a case of age discrimination or equal pay. It is often the only way of seeking justice for a case of work discrimination.
Filing a claim with the EEOC
The EEOC is the federal agency responsible for investigating employment discrimination complaints. Employment discrimination takes place when somebody is mistreated at work because of a personal feature, such as gender, color, ethnicity, religion, sexual harassment and sexual orientation. These sorts of discrimination are illegal according to federal law.
Once a complaint has been filed, the EEOC will investigate it. This may include conducting witness interviews, visiting the workplace or requesting more information about the discrimination. There are several ways the EEOC handles the discrimination.
One is issuing a Dismissal and Notice of Rights which means that the EEOC did not uncover any evidence of unlawful discrimination.
The second is a Letter of Determination which indicates that the EEOC believes that discrimination may have occurred. Both parties — the employer and the employee — will receive this letter from the EEOC. The third is the Right to Sue letter which you need from the EEOC before you file your own lawsuit.
What to Do With a Right to Sue Letter?
When you receive a Right to Sue letter you have to work quickly to gather the evidence to support your claim of discrimination in your workplace. This is because there is now a strict deadline which is just 90 days to file a lawsuit. The first thing that you should do after receiving a Right to Sue letter is contact an attorney.
The Benefits of Working with an Attorney
Trying to take on your employer in a discrimination case can be difficult and stressful, but hiring an employment attorney to help you win your case can have the following benefits:
- a powerful, assertive voice and is a tough negotiator;
- helps to reduce the stress that takes place when filing a discrimination case;
- ensures all the right evidence is ready to be presented at the lawsuit;
- helps to avoid going to court by negotiating the lawsuit directly with the employer;
- has a track record of winning work discrimination claims.
Once you have received your Right to Sue letter from the EEOC you have to act quickly to start the lawsuit due to the tight deadlines. An employment attorney can ensure you have all the right evidence to support your discrimination claim so you have a higher chance of winning. So, don’t delay!