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By John Kristensen of Kristensen, LLP posted in Other on Saturday, April 24, 2021.
What Happens After Filing A Civil Rights Claim

Unfortunately, civil rights violations still regularly take place in society, and on a daily basis too. Such violations are actually so commonplace these days that they’re accepted, ignored, and sometimes even endorsed. Often, victims of civil rights violations aren’t even aware that their protected rights are being violated. While this is indeed a sad thing, there are steps that everyone can take to protect themselves and seek justice, making sure the offender(s) are punished and victims are awarded damages. 


If you’re wondering whether or not your protected rights have been violated, here is an abridged definition of “civil rights violation”: Any offense that occurs as a result or threat of force against a victim by the offender on the basis of being a member of a protected category. Protected categories include race, color, gender, age, nationality, disability, and more.


It’s not difficult to identify a civil rights violation or to know if an incident in which you may have been victimized qualifies as one, so why is there a lack of claims? Many people are discouraged by the filing process and lack of knowledge of what happens or what to do following the filing of a claim, or how to achieve the best outcome. Here is a brief outline of what to expect after filing a civil rights claim:


OCR Determines Legal Authority


Once a complaint is filed, the OCR, or Office for Civil Rights, reviews the claim in order to determine whether or not they have the legal authority to review and investigate the complaint. 


After Clearance


After the OCR has reviewed the complaint and determines that it is their enforcement responsibility, an investigator will begin gathering information. This can be done via witness interviews, gathering documentation, and making visits to relevant sites.


After Investigation


After the investigation is completed, the OCR will issue a letter including a formal decision on whether or not your rights have been violated. 


Period for Corrective Action


In the event that the OCR has determined that your rights have been violated, they will notify the offender(s) and set a specific window of time for the offender(s) to effectively correct their actions, or provide the OCR with a detailed plan of correction. 


Failure to Corrective = Enforcement Action


If the offender(s) fail to correct the action or provide a plan of correction within the allotted time, or refuse to correct the action, then the OCR will initiate enforcement proceedings.


This process can be difficult for even the most knowledgeable and resourceful people, especially because of the stress and strain of being the victim of a civil rights violation. You should know that you’re not alone and not without help in the fight for justice. Kristensen LLP has successfully represented clients in civil rights claims for years. Call our office today, and let us help you find the justice you seek.