Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, this section applies to all allegations of discrimination on the basis of disability in programs or activities conducted by the Commission in violation of section 504. This section also applies to all complaints alleging a violation of the agency's responsibility to procure electronic and information technology under section 508 whether filed by members of the public or EEOC employees or applicants.
The Commission shall process complaints alleging violations of section 504 with respect to employment according to the procedures established by EEOC in 29 CFR part 1614 pursuant to section 501 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 791 ). With regard to employee claims concerning agency procurements made in violation of section 508, the procedures set out in paragraphs (d) through (m) of this section shall be used.
Responsibility for implementation and operation of this section shall be vested in the Director, Office of Equal Opportunity (Director of OEO).
(d) Filing a complaint.
Any person who believes that he or she has been subjected to discrimination prohibited by this part or that the agency's procurement of electronic and information technology has violated section 508, or authorized representative of such person, may file a complaint with the Director of OEO. Any person who believes that any specific class of persons has been subjected to discrimination prohibited by this part and who is a member of that class or the authorized representative of a member of that class may file a complaint with the Director. A charge on behalf of a person or member of a class of persons claiming to be aggrieved may be made by any person, agency or organization.
Where and when to file. Complaints shall be filed with the Director of OEO within one hundred and eighty calendar days of the alleged acts of discrimination. A complaint shall be deemed filed on the date it is postmarked, or, in the absence of a postmark, on the date it is received in the Office of the Director. The Commission shall extend the time period for filing a complaint upon a showing of good cause. For example, the Commission shall extend this time limit if a complainant shows that he or she was not notified of the time limits and was not otherwise aware of them, or that he or she was prevented by circumstances beyond his or her control from submitting the matter within the time limits. A technically incomplete complaint shall be deemed timely if the complainant cures any defect upon request.
Acceptance of complaint. (1) The Commission shall accept a complete complaint that is filed in accordance with paragraph (d) of this section and over which it has jurisdiction. The Director, Office of Equal Opportunity shall notify the complainant and the respondent of receipt and acceptance of the complaint.
If the Director, Office of Equal Opportunity receives a complaint that is not complete, he or she shall notify the complainant, within 30 days of receipt of the incomplete complaint, that additional information is needed. If the complainant fails to complete the complaint within 30 days of receipt of this notice, the Director shall dismiss the complaint without prejudice and shall so inform the complainant.
If the Commission receives a complaint over which it does not have jurisdiction, it shall promptly notify the complainant and shall make reasonable efforts to refer the complaint to the appropriate government entity.
The Commission shall notify the Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board upon receipt of any complaint alleging that a building or facility that is subject to the Architectural Barriers Act of 1968, as amended (42 U.S.C. 4151-415 7), is not readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities.
Within 180 days of the receipt of a complete complaint for which it has jurisdiction, the Commission shall notify the complainant of the results of the investigation in a letter containing—
Findings of fact and conclusions of law;
A description of a remedy for each violation found; and
A notice of the right to appeal.
Appeals of the findings of fact and conclusions of law or remedies must be filed with the Chair of the Commission by the complainant within ninety calendar days of receipt from the Commission of the letter required by § 1615.170(h). The Commission shall extend this time for good cause when a complainant shows that he or she was not notified of the prescribed time limit and was not otherwise aware of it or that circumstances beyond his or her control prevented the filing of an appeal within the prescribed time limit. An appeal shall be deemed filed on the date it is postmarked, or, in the absence of a postmark, on the date it is received by the Chair at EEOC headquarters. It should be clearly marked “Appeal of section 504 decision” or “Appeal of section 508 decision” and should contain specific objections explaining why the person believes the initial decision was factually or legally wrong. Attached to the appeal letter should be a copy of the initial decision being appealed.
Timely appeals shall be decided by the Chair of the Commission unless the Commission determines that an appeal raises a policy issue which should be addressed by the full Commission.
The Chair will draft a decision within 30 days of receipt of an appeal and circulate it to the Commission.
If a Commissioner believes an appeal raises a policy issue that should be addressed by the full Commission, he or she shall so inform the Chair by notice in writing within ten calendar days of the circulation of the draft decision on appeal.
If the Chair does not receive such written notice, the decision on appeal shall be issued.
If the Chair receives written notice as described in subparagraph (2), the Commission shall resolve the appeal through a vote.
The Commission shall notify the complainant of the results of the appeal within ninety calendar days of the receipt of the appeal from the complainant. If the Commission determines that it needs additional information from the complainant, it shall have sixty days from the date it receives the additional information to make its determination on the appeal.
The time limits cited in paragraphs (h) and (k) of this section may be extended with the permission of the Assistant Attorney General.
The Commission may delegate its authority for conducting complaint investigations to other Federal agencies, or may contract with non-Federal entities to conduct such investigations except that the authority for making the final determination may not be delegated.
Civil actions. The remedies, procedures, and rights set forth in sections 505(a)(2) and 505(b) of the Rehabilitation Act, 29 U.S.C. 794a(a)(2) and 794a(b) shall be the remedies, procedures, and rights available to any individual with a disability filing a complaint under this section.
[54 FR 22749, May 26, 1989, as amended at 71 FR 26830, May 9, 2006; 73 FR 39868, July 11, 2008]
At 74 FR 3430, Jan. 21, 2009, § 1615.170
was amended by removing the text “1801 'L' Street NW.” and adding, in its place, the text “131 M Street, NE.” in paragraphs (d)(2) and (i); however, the amendment could not be incorporated because the text does not exist .