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How California investigates employment discrimination

In California, the Department of Fair Employment and Housing oversees employment discrimination complaints. When a worker has been the victim of discrimination in the workplace, he she may file a complaint with the DFEH, which will then investigate the complaint and determine whether discrimination did occur. But how does the investigation work? And what type of evidence does the DFEH consider when reviewing a complaint?

Understanding the investigation process is very important to many people who have filed claims with the DFEH. They rightfully want to know that the process will be fair and thorough. Hopefully this post will help you better understand what will happen after you file a discrimination complaint.

According to the DFEH, the department takes a neutral stance when investigating a claim, operating solely as fact collectors. To determine whether discrimination has occurred, department employees carefully review records and documents submitted from both sides in association with the complaint.

A major part of the investigation process can be interviewing witnesses, but investigators also have the power to issue subpoenas and even seek restraining orders throughout an investigation. 

Once the DFEH has reviewed all relevant evidence from both sides, which can take up to one year, it will make a decision.

If you are considering filing a complaint for employment discrimination, it can be helpful to first speak with an experienced lawyer. A lawyer who is familiar with employment law in California can help you obtain supporting evidence for your claim and make sure your rights are protected throughout the investigation.

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