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Employment Initial Inquiry Questionnaire

South Carolina Human Affairs Commission

The SC Human Affairs Commission (SHAC) investigates complaints of employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, or disability. The laws enforced by SHAC require you to file a charge before you can file a lawsuit for unlawful employment discrimination. There are strict time limits for filing a charge, generally within 300 days of the alleged harm.

The Employment Initial Inquiry Questionnaire is for individuals who believe they have experienced employment discrimination by a private employer, state or local government, union, or employment agency. SHAC does not have jurisdiction over any branch of the federal government.

Submitting the Employment Initial Inquiry Questionnaire will help us better understand your complaint and why you believe you have been subjected to discrimination. The information you provide to SHAC is confidential and your employer will not be contacted unless you file a charge of discrimination.

Submitting this complaint online does not mean you have filed a charge of discrimination.

After you submit the Employment Initial Inquiry Questionnaire online, it will be analyzed to determine if SHAC has jurisdiction to investigate your complaint and if it meets the essential elements of a discrimination complaint. Answer all questions as completely as possible and submit additional details if needed to complete your response(s).

Complaints are processed in the order in which they are received. Routine updates regarding the status of the complaint are not given because of existing workloads, but you may be contacted for clarification and additional information.

If SHAC has the legal authority to investigate your complaint, we will prepare a formal Charge of Discrimination, a legal document that outlines your allegations of discrimination. You will be required to sign the charge and return it in order to file a charge of discrimination. You need to file a charge if you want SHAC to investigate your complaint or if you want to sue your employer in court.

Once your charge has been filed with SHAC, it will also be filed with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). If you have already filed your complaint with the EEOC, it is not necessary to submit your complaint to the SC Human Affairs Commission. Complaints that have been filed independently with both agencies will result in one of the complaints being dismissed.