Title VII, ADEA, ADA, and Equal Pay Act are the primary EEOC laws
What number of employees does your company need for EEOC laws apply?
Title VII applies when you’ve got 15 or more employees or cover employers with 15 or more employees. ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) covers companies with 15 or more. ADEA (Age Discrimination in Employment Act) only kicks in when a company has 20 employees. The Equal Pay Act, of course, covers companies no matter the size
This is important with respect to the EEOC, because if you are too small a company and you get a charge, there are ways to get that dismissed, because the EEOC won’t have jurisdiction.
Size defense against EEOC laws
Finding out the size of the company is the first thing you should do. If you don’t meet the threshold number of employees, you should write to the EEOC and let them know that immediately. What may happen then is they’ll follow up and ask for proof of the number of employees that the company has, but otherwise, they’ll typically dismiss the matter, because, again, they’ll have no jurisdiction.
Timelines under EEOC laws
Check timeliness. You want to see has this charge been filed in a timely manner. Remember, if someone is complaining about something that happened, say two years ago, the charge is too late, because the alleged action must have occurred no more than 180 or 300 days earlier, depending on whether there’s a state agency or not. If someone’s complaining about something that happened years ago, then again, you’re going to want to let the agency know that this is not timely. However, the agency probably would have done its homework and would not submit a charge, if it were really obviously untimely.
These are the edited remarks from the Rapid Learning Institute webinar “EEOC Charges: How to Prepare an Airtight Response and Avoid Costly Payouts” by Alyssa Senzel, Esq on August 1, 2007
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