The Chicago Employment Law Blog

How To File A Discrimination Claim

Federal law prohibits workplace discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, age, disability or genetic profile. Workers also may file a claim if they believe they have been treated unfairly because of a pregnancy (either real or perceived) or out of retaliation.

Illinois employment discrimination law is very similar, but also protects against unfair treatment based on ancestry, citizenship status, marital status, arrest record, military status, sexual orientation and unfavorable discharge from military service.

Navigating the alphabet soup of state and federal laws can be a daunting task, but the following resources should help simplify the experience:

Federal Resources:

Overview: How to File a Charge of Employment Discrimination (EEOC) - Start here if you are new to the process.

Chicago District Office: Location, Hours & Contact Info (EEOC)

Overview of Federal Sector EEO Complaint Process (EEOC) - This is applicable to federal employees only.

Coverage Requirements, by Employer Type (EEOC) - Different types of employers have different obligations under the law.

The ADA: Your Employment Rights as an Individual With a Disability (EEOC) - Overview of disability rights.

Online EEOC Assessment System (EEOC) - Walks employees through a series of questions to determine how a claim should be handled.

Time Limits for Filing a Charge (EEOC)

Discrimination & Harassment (FindLaw) - Provides links to information and guidance on job discrimination issues.


State Resources:

Employment Charge Information (Il. Dept. of Human Rights) - Start here if you are new to the process.

Employment Complainant Information Sheet (PDF, Il. Dept. of Human Rights) - This is the form you fill out and send when filing a formal employment discrimination claim with the state.

Filing a Charge of Discrimination Under the Illinois Human Rights Act (PDF, Il. Dept. of Human Rights) - This 12-page pamphlet explains the law in plain language, including how to file a claim.

Filing a Charge of Discrimination Under the Illinois Human Rights Act (Il. Dept. of Human Rights) - Provides links to the above brochure in Italian, Polish, Spanish, French, Chinese, Korean, Hindi, Urdu and Arabic.