Notice of Right to Sue

As the longest government shutdown in history has come to an end, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently released guidance for employers faced with upcoming EEO-1 submission deadlines and responding to charges of discrimination filed during the government shutdown.

For 2018 EEO-1 submissions, the EEOC announced that it has postponed the opening of the EEO-1 survey until early March 2019 and that it will extend the deadline to submit EEO-1 data until May 31, 2019. The EEO-1 is an annual survey that requires all private employers with 100 or more employees and federal government contractors or first-tier subcontractors with 50 or more employees and a federal contract, sub­contract or purchase order amounting to $50,000 or more to file the EEO-1 report. The EEOC is encouraging employers who are required to submit an EEO-1 to continue to check back on the EEOC website in the coming weeks for an updated schedule for submissions.

If an employer received a notice of a charge of discrimination while the government was shutdown, between December 22, 2018 and January 28, 2019, the EEOC implemented a blanket due date for all position statements responding to such charges to be uploaded to the EEOC portal. The EEOC is requiring all positions to be uploaded to the EEOC portal by March 1, 2019. The EEOC’s Q&A Guidance explains the automatic extension granted for due dates and the new submission date of March 1, 2019.

Finally, the EEOC reiterated in its guidance that the government shutdown does not affect the 90-day time period a charging party has for filing a lawsuit based on a Notice of Right to Sue. Once a charging party receives a Notice of Right to Sue, a lawsuit must be filed within 90 days.