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If you think that you have been discriminated against, please watch our video presentation, What you Need to Know Before Filing a Charge. If, after viewing the video presentation, you decide that you want to proceed with the complaint process, you will need to complete an Intake Packet.
Assuming that you are within the time limits allowed for filing a discrimination claim based on a protected class, the first step in the complaint process is to complete a Colorado Civil Rights Division Intake Packet. We have an Intake Packet for each of the areas that we cover - Employment, Housing, and Public Accommodations. The Intake Packet will give us the information that we need to draft a charge.
It is important that you complete all of the required forms in the Intake Packet and that you provide a detailed narrative account of the facts, the adverse action(s), and the basis for your claim. Failure to complete all forms may result in an untimely delay in the processing of your claim. Remember, completing an Intake Packet does not constitute filing a charge or meeting the filing deadline but is the start of the intake process.
Based on the information that you provide us during the intake process, the Division's Intake Unit may prepare a formal Charge of Discrimination for your signature. There is no fee for filing a formal complaint with the Colorado Civil Rights Division.A charge is legally filed at the time that the Division is in receipt of the signed Charge of Discrimination. Instead of filing with the Civil Rights Division, employment complaints may be filed with our federal counterpart, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). Housing cases may be filed with the U.S. Dept. of Housing & Urban Development (HUD).
By law, a Charge of Discrimination must be filed by mail or in person at one of the Division's offices. Charges of Discrimination may not be accepted if emailed or faxed.
The Division will serve the Charge of Discrimination on the Respondent by regular mail. You will receive a copy of the service letter in the mail indicating that your charge has been served. Along with the Charge of Discrimination, we will send to the Respondent a "Request for Information" requiring specific responses relating to the allegations.
After filing a charge of discrimination, the parties may agree to mediate. Mediation provides the parties with an opportunity to resolve a claim. The Division ADR Unit provides neutral mediators to assist parties who mutually agree to attempt to resolve their differences through mediation. Parties may request the opportunity to mediate after the Division is in receipt of a signed and dated charge of discrimination. mediation can provide a monetary and/or non-monetary resolution that benefits and reduces costs to all parties.
If a settlement is not reached, the case will be assigned to an Investigator.The Investigator analyzes all information relevant to the case, conducts interviews and requests information as needed. The Respondent submits a response to the request for information, and the Charging Party may submit a rebuttal, if he or she chooses. Both parties will be provided with the opportunity to inspect and review information that has been submitted by the other party during the investigation. Both parties may also supply the names of additional witnesses who could testify in your favor or help you in refuting the other party's statements and information.
After the investigation process has been completed, the Investigator will prepare a summary report to the Director of the Civil Rights Division. The Director or designee reviews this report and issues to both parties a Letter of Determination. The Letter of Determination states with specificity the facts of the case and the analysis of the issues. If the Director believes that the preponderance of the evidence supports the allegation of discrimination he will issue a finding of Probable Cause. Conversely, if the evidence does not support the claim, a finding of No Probable Cause is issued. Along with the dismissal of the claim you will be issued a notice of Right to Sue. A Right to Sue Notice allows you to proceed in court if you desire.
If the Director issues a Letter of Determination finding No Probable Cause then the case is dismissed, but you may have the opportunity to appeal that decision to the Colorado Civil Rights Commission. An appeal form and instructions are provided with all findings of No Probable Cause. Appeals must be filed within the jurisdictional time set forth in the Letter of Determination. New or additional information not previously considered during the investigative process may be considered as part of the appeal process.
If a finding of Probable Cause is issued, Colorado law requires that a mandatory Conciliation Conference be held. The Director will assign a conciliator to work with both parties to try to resolve the complaint. If successful, a formal agreement, with the specifics of the settlement, is drafted by the ADR Unit and signed by both parties.
If the case is not resolved through settlement, the Civil Rights Commission will decide whether to take the case to a public hearing, except in Housing cases, which are automatically set for hearing. If the Commission authorizes the case for hearing before and Administrative Law Judge, the administrative hearing will begin within 120 days after service of the written notice of hearing and complaint.
If the Division dismisses your case with a No Probable Cause determination, you will be advised that you have the right to sue in District Court within 90 days. Under the amendment to the law giving the division 270 days to complete a case, if the Division does not complete its investigation within 180 days, you may request a right to sue letter and the division must provide it.