Mediation is an Alternative Dispute Resolution Offered by the EEOC to Settle Your Claim.
An EEOC mediation uses a neutral mediator to help you and your employer settle your employment discrimination or sexual harassment disputes. The mediator’s role is to provide neutral assistance in settling the dispute between you and your employer.
Before filing your EEOC charge, you should consult with an experienced employment discrimination attorney. Your attorney can advise you of your rights. They can help you through the mediation process to ensure you do not lose your rights or the compensation you deserve. For over 25 years, the experienced EEOC representation lawyers at the Derek Smith Law Group have helped clients through the mediation process to receive justice.
What Is an EEOC Mediation?
What Are the Benefits of EEOC Mediation?
There are several benefits to EEOC mediation.
- EEOC Mediation is much faster than a trial. It takes a few hours, as opposed to weeks, months, or even years.
- It is entirely confidential and out of the public record.
- It is friendly, allowing employers and employees to salvage relationships potentially.
- It is voluntary. If it does not work, you may continue the EEOC investigation and litigation process.
- It is free to participate. Litigation can cost thousands of dollars as well as hundreds in court costs.
Does the EEOC Require the Parties to Participate in the Mediation Process?
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) offers mediation as an option to settle your claim quickly. The decision to participate is entirely voluntary. However, both parties must reach an agreement for the mediation to succeed.
If either party refuses to participate, the mediation does take place. If either party does not agree to the settlement, the case continues towards the litigation process without a settlement.
Can a Party Request Mediation If the EEOC Does Not Offer It?
Either party can request an EEOC mediation at any time. The EEOC will offer mediation at specific times during the process (the beginning of the process and after completing the investigation). However, the EEOC is always willing to mediate the claim and reach an early settlement.
What Is the Cost of Mediation?
Taxpayer dollars fund the EEOC, allowing it to offer many free services. Mediation is one of these offered services. The services are free to employees and employers. The federal government puts money aside to operate the EEOC, allowing them to provide mediation and other services.
The taxpayer cost of EEOC mediation is low. EEOC mediation is much less costly than paying a federal judge and attorneys to handle a case. Mediation, in all forms, is less expensive than a long investigation or a trial to the taxpayer, employee, and employer.
When Does EEOC Mediation Occur?
EEOC Mediation can occur at any point in the claim process. The EEOC first offers mediation within ten (10) days of filing the initial employment discrimination or sexual harassment charges. Once the EEOC completes its investigation, it will offer a second opportunity for mediation. However, you can request mediation at any point during the process.
How Does EEOC Mediation Work?
The EEOC mediation process is informal. A mediator helps both parties negotiate a settlement. The mediator is not a lawyer or adviser to either side. Therefore, they will only assist with the negotiation. They will not offer any legal advice. You may bring an employment lawyer with you to mediation.
The parties may choose to settle the claim with a settlement agreement or continue the investigation. Mediation is a no-pressure option to reach a settlement quickly and easily. If you reach a settlement, the case is over. You cannot file a lawsuit in federal court regarding your claim.
Is the EEOC Mediation Process Confidential?
An EEOC mediation is entirely confidential. Part of the settlement agreement includes a non-disclosure agreement. Both parties agree to keep the details of the mediation confidential.
Mediation is never transcribed or recorded. Therefore, any discussion is completely off the record. Even notes taken during the process are destroyed. The settlement agreement is the only piece of the mediation process that gets filed (it is sealed).
How Long Does EEOC Mediation Take?
An EEOC mediation can take 3 to 4 hours or longer to complete. However, it is often completed in one day. The EEOC mediation process does not require evidence or witnesses. Instead, mediation is a negotiation to find agreeable common ground.
How Can an EEOC Representation Attorney Help You Through Mediation?
You do not have to go through EEOC mediation alone. While it is voluntary, any settlement agreement is a legally binding document. Therefore, an EEOC representation lawyer can advise you through the process. Your lawyer will help ensure you get the compensation you deserve without giving up your rights.
The mediator is a neutral party. He cannot give you any legal advice about the process or the settlement. Your employer will likely have a lawyer or team of lawyers to guide him through the process. Your lawyer can be your advocate to help you through the process. They can ensure you get the best possible outcome for your claim.
Contact Our Experienced EEOC Representation Attorneys for Your Free Consultation
EEOC mediations are never mandatory for employees. However, they are often offered to settle discrimination and harassment disputes. A qualified EEOC representation lawyer can help. If you are the victim of employment discrimination or sexual harassment, contact the Derek Smith Law Group’s experienced attorneys.
Have You Filed an EEOC Charge? Are You Considering EEOC Mediation to Settle Your Charge? Please Call Us at 800.807.2209 or email [email protected] to Learn About Your Rights Regarding EEOC Mediation.