What to Do When the EEOC Comes Knocking

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is something most employers don’t think about – or, sometimes, even realize exists – until the day they are contacted about a complaint.  As a result, employers make several common mistakes regarding an EEOC investigation in Florida and across the country that can worsen their situation or even guarantee they are dragged into court with a bad outcome.  As with other aspects of business, there are some key steps that an employer can take to mitigate the damage and limit the trouble an EEOC investigation causes.

Take It Seriously

Too many employers regard claims of discrimination as “nuisances,” and often regard the complainant as merely a disgruntled employee or former employee.  EEOC investigations in Ft. Lauderdale and elsewhere have serious consequences, and must be taken seriously.

Assign an Attorney

One of the biggest mistakes employers make when served notice of an EEOC investigation is to allow a non-attorney to handle the process.  While a manager directly involved or a Human Resources professional might seem a natural choice, EEOC investigations have a complex set of rules and procedures an experienced Florida attorney is best suited to handle.  For example, every statement made during an EEOC investigation can be used later against you if the EEOC decides litigation is justified.

Prepare the Position

Every employer under EEOC investigation has the right to craft a Position Statement in which it can refute the charges and offer its perspective on the situation.  The more thought and effort put into this document, the better your chances of escaping litigation.  In the event of litigation, this document is often at the center of either the attack or the defense, so prepare it thoughtfully.

EEOC investigations don’t have to turn into lengthy nightmares – if you take proper steps.