Skip Navigation Links

Employment Discrimination

Federal Laws Prohibiting Discrimination in the Workplace

Discrimination in the workplace—on the basis of gender, race, religion, age, national origin, disability, and a number of other factors—is prohibited by federal anti-discrimination statutes. Government agencies, most notably the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), promulgate and enforce regulations based on these laws.  An understanding of both statutory and regulatory law, then, is essential in researching federal antidiscrimination law.  The three federal statutes that broadly prohibit most forms of employment discrimination are:

Most federal anti-discrimination laws require that you "exhaust your remedies," or file a charge with the EEOC or other appropriate administrative body, and receive a "right to sue" letter from that agency, before you can pursue a lawsuit in court. There are strict time limits within which these charges must be filed, usually six months or less.  Most states have enacted their own anti-discrimination laws; many state laws, including those of California, offer a higher level of protection than their federal counterparts. If a charge filed with the EEOC is also covered by state law, the EEOC will "dual file" the charge with the state Fair Employment Practices Agency (FEPA), but ordinarily retains the charge for handling.  EEOC regulations can be found in Title 29, Part 1614 of the Code of Federal Regulations.


Federal Law of Employment Discrimination in a Nutshell KF 3455 .Z9 C68 (Self Help)
Reliable guide to the federal law of employment discrimination. Authoritative summary covers common law; labor relations; public employees and the Constitution; statutes; and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

Sexual Harassment in the Workplace KF 3467 .B65 (Self Help)
This comprehensive, practical guide shows how to identify harassment and to understand its causes in the workplace. It discusses the effect of sexual harassment as it relates to the victim, other personnel, and the company.

The Essential Guide to Handling Workplace Harassment & Discrimination KF 3464 .E54 (Self Help)
This is an essential reference for human resources professionals, managers, and supervisors who are responsible for addressing and preventing harassment and discrimination problems in the workplace.


American Jurisprudence 2d (Am Jur)
KF 154 .A42 (Ready Reference)
Volumes 45A-C, Job Discrimination, include a detailed discussion of anti-discrimination laws and topics including protected classes, retaliatory actions, regulated employer practices, and employment terms and conditions.
Electronic Access:  On the Law Library's computers, using WestlawNext.

American Jurisprudence Proof of Facts KF 8935 .A52 (Compact)
This set provides a broad range of legal information about proving various types of torts, including employment discrimination, and provides resources for experts to consult.
Electronic Access:  On the Law Library's computers, using WestlawNext.

Corpus Juris Secundum (CJS)
The topic "Civil Rights," section IV, "Employment Practices," includes an in-depth discussion on employment discrimination.
Electronic Access Only:  On the Law Library's computers, using WestlawNext.

Federal Procedure, Lawyers' Edition KF 8835 .F4
Volumes 21 and 22 provide an analysis of federal employment discrimination law and procedure.


Age Discrimination Litigation
KF 3465 .P53
This practice guide addresses the major aspects of age discrimination actions, including intake, discovery, the use of expert witnesses, trial, and settlement negotiations.

Bender's Forms of Discovery KF 8900 .A3 B45
Volume 5A of this set contains interrogatories concerning cases involving wrongful termination or denial of employment because of alleged discrimination.

Employee Rights Litigation: Pleading and Practice KF 3455 .E465
This practice guide provides the basic legal standards for statutory and common law claims grounded on allegations of employment discrimination.

Employment Discrimination KF 3464 .L37
This treatise covers retaliation, remedies, race differentiation, the ADA, and more.The Appendices include EEOC forms, practice forms, and an exhaustive index.

Litigating Employment Discrimination Cases KF 3464 .F75 
This guide discusses proven strategies for litigating discrimination cases, including tactics and arguments to help with the practical aspects of employment litigation.

Litigating Employment Discrimination and Civil Rights Cases KF 1325 .C58 L49
This work covers the fundamentals of litigating actions under federal anti-discrimination statutes and offers guidance on coverage, claims, defenses, and damages.

Manual on Employment Discrimination & Civil Rights Actions in the Federal Courts
This guide offers an extensive analysis of federal employment and civil rights statutes. It contains an in-depth discussion of the elements of an action, the use of statistical evidence, and available remedies. There are sample forms, checklists, charts, and in-court management techniques.
Electronic Access Only:  On the Law Library's computers, using WestlawNext.

Pattern Discovery: Employment Litigation KF 8900 .D32
This guide contains model forms for various discovery devices relating to job discrimination claims, including interrogatories, requests for production, and deposition sets.

Pregnancy Discrimination and Parental Leave Handbook KF 3467 .R35
This title discusses major federal and state laws, cases, policy decisions, legal analysis, compliance requirements, and strategies and tactics relating to pregnancy and parenting in the workplace.

Representing Plaintiffs in Title VII Actions KF 3464 .S66
A comprehensive treatise and practice guide addressing entire Title VII actions, including case screening and intake, proof of facts, discriminatory practices, class actions, dispositions, and remedies.  

Sex-Based Employment Discrimination KF 3467 .O48
This two-volume set includes coverage of pregnancy- and sex-based discrimination claims.
Electronic Access:  On the Law Library's computers, using WestlawNext.


American Jurisprudence Pleading and Practice Forms Annotated
KF 8836 .A45 (Ready Reference)
The only major set of general pleading and practice forms, volume 16 on Labor and Labor Relations includes a variety of Title VII forms.
Electronic Access:  On the Law Library's computers, using WestlawNext.


Employment Discrimination: An Overview 
A concise overview of employment law by Cornell's Legal Information Institute.

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission 
The EEOC is an independent federal agency originally created by Congress in 1964 to enforce Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. EEOC provides a range of informational materials and assistance to individuals and entities with rights and responsibilities under EEOC-enforced laws. Most materials and assistance are provided to the public at no cost.

Federal Laws Prohibiting Job Discrimination: Questions and Answers 
One of many publications by the EEOC, this guide is useful introductory reading.


EEOC San Francisco District Office
450 Golden Gate Avenue
5 West, P.O Box 36025
San Francisco, CA 94102-3661 (1-800-669-4000)
The San Francisco District Office is open Monday - Friday from 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.  Walk-in services are available on Tuesday and Thursday from 8:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. Please call first for information. The San Francisco District Office has jurisdiction over several states in the Pacific Northwest and numerous counties in Northern California. Its website features information on filing a claim locally, as well as mediation and outreach resources available within its jurisdiction.

updated rmm 03/2014