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Alan Lescht and Associates successfully represents DC government employees in cases before the DC Office of Human Rights.
The DC Office of Human Rights (OHR) is a government agency that enforces the DC Human Rights Act (DCHRA) and other civil rights laws for employees in the District of Columbia. The DCHRA prohibits employers from discriminating against employees on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, marital status, personal appearance, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, family responsibilities, political affiliation, disability, matriculation, familial status, genetic information, source of income, place of residence or business, and status as a victim of an intrafamily offense. OHR also enforces the District of Columbia Family and Medical Leave Act (DCFMLA).
If your Dc government employer violated your rights under the DC Human Rights Act, the DCFMLA, or another law that OHR enforces, the first thing you should do is contact your agency’s EEO counselor. You must contact an EEO counselor within 180 days of the discrimination or retaliation. The EEO counselor will work with you and your employer to try to resolve the case. If your claims are not resolved within 30 days, the EEO counselor will give you an Exit Letter and Notice of Right to File a Formal Complaint with OHR. If you want to continue with your case at OHR, you must file a complaint with OHR within 15 days of receiving the Exit Letter.
After you file a complaint, OHR will schedule an intake interview. During intake, an OHR Equal Opportunity Specialist will meet with you and ask you questions about your claims. If you have a claim, the Equal Opportunity Specialist will draft a formal charge of discrimination that includes details about what happened.
OHR will schedule a mandatory mediation. A mediator will meet with you and your employer and try to help the parties settle the case. If the case does not settle, OHR will investigate your claims and issue a determination that either there is “probable cause” that you were discriminated against, or that there is “no probable cause” of discrimination.
If you receive a probable cause determination, you may be able to request an administrative hearing before the DC Commission on Human Rights, which is an agency within OHR. The Commission on Human Rights will assign an administrative judge, who will make a proposed decision on your case. If the Commission may affirm, reject, or modify the proposed decision. If you win your case, you may be awarded damages. Depending on your claims, these damages may include lost wages and benefits, compensatory damages for emotional pain and suffering, reinstatement to your job, and reimbursement of attorney’s fees.
If you are a DC government employee who experienced discrimination, harassment, or retaliation at work, we can help. Our attorneys will work with you to evaluate your case, discuss your options, and develop a strategy to assert your rights. Alan Lescht and Associates represents clients in DC Office of Human Rights cases:
Send us an email or call us at (202) 463-6036 to speak with an experienced employment attorney. Alan Lescht and Associates offers strategic and results-driven legal services to DC government employees.