If you are one of the more than 800,000 government employees who is not working due to the government shutdown and you also have a pending EEOC claim or are thinking about filing an EEOC claim, you may be wondering what happens with your case during the government shutdown. The federal employees at the EEOC, like you, are also furloughed during the government shutdown. Therefore, they are not working on the processing of cases. All hearings have been cancelled. Telephone conferences with Administrative Judges (AJ) have cancelled. Deadlines for filing documents based on an Order from the have also been extended. On the EEOC website the following guidance is given to federal employees with EEO claims:
EEOC will accept Federal Sector hearing requests during the shutdown. For parties involved in the federal hearings program, any hearing/proceeding before an Administrative Judge (AJ) (settlement conference, pre-hearing conference, mediation, hearing on a motion, or hearing on the merits) will be postponed until further notice. Similarly, deadlines for completing discovery or submitting motions are also suspended during the federal government shutdown. For any matters that were scheduled and postponed due to the shutdown, the parties should contact the AJ to reschedule. Regarding deadlines for discovery or to submit motions, the general rule will be that applicable deadlines will be extended by the number of days the government is shut down. AJs have discretion to modify deadlines as appropriate. For more information from the EEOC go to: https://www.eeoc.gov/shutdown.cfm
If you are approaching the 45 day deadline for initiating an EEO complaint, you should send an email to your Agency’s EEO office to ensure there is no claim that you are untimely.
We sincerely hope all federal employees will be back to work soon. As we learn every time there is a shutdown, federal employees keep this country running. Thank you for your service!
For help with an EEO matter contact our office at 404-994-6218.