How To File A Complaint

The Civil Rights Division enforces civil rights laws in a wide variety of contexts. You may use the information on this page to find the appropriate way to submit a complaint or report of a potential civil rights violation. If you are not sure which Section is the appropriate one to receive your complaint, you may contact the Civil Rights Division at (888) 736-5551 or (202) 514-3847.

Criminal Section Housing and Civil
Enforcement Section
Disability Rights Section

Immigrant and Employee Rights Section

Educational Opportunities Section Special Litigation Section
Employment Litigation Section Voting Section
Federal Coordination and Compliance  

Please let us know if you have trouble understanding English or need help communicating with the Civil Rights Division. Ask for an interpreter or if translated material is available when you contact us. If you can, please tell us your language (or dialect).

Availability of Language Assistance Services   (English)
توافر خدمات المساعدة اللغوية – قسم الحقوق المدنية   (Arabic)
语言协助服务现成可用   (Simplified Chinese)
語言協助服務現成可用   (Traditional Chinese)
Magagamit na Mga Paglilingkod Ukol sa Tulong na Pangwikain — Sangay sa Mga Karapatang Sibil   (Filipino)
Disponibilité de services d'aide linguistique   (French)
[언어 지원 서비스 이용 – 인권국   (Korean)
Disponibilidade de Serviços de Assistência Linguística – Divisão dos Direitos Civis   (Portuguese)
Управление по делам о нарушениях гражданских прав   (Russian)
Disponibilidad de servicios de asistencia lingüística   (Spanish)
Sự Sẵn Sàng của Dịch Vụ Hỗ Trợ Ngôn Ngữ   (Vietnamese)

Alabama's Immigration Law H.B. 56

To report potential civil rights concerns related to the impact of Alabama's immigration law H.B. 56, please contact 1-855-353-1010 or hb56@usdoj.gov.

Criminal 

Contact your local FBI field office to report incidents of:

You can find your local office here:
http://www.fbi.gov/contact/fo/fo.htm

Please include as many details of the incident as possible, such as the dates and times; names of possible witnesses; and supporting documents, such as police and medical reports, or photographs.

You may also mail a written copy of the complaint and materials you submitted to the FBI to the Criminal Section at:

US Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Civil Rights Division
Criminal Section – PHB
Washington, DC 20530
 

Disability Rights 

You can file an Americans with Disabilities Act complaint alleging disability discrimination against a State or local government or a public accommodation (including, for example, a restaurant, doctor's office, retail store, hotel, etc.) by mail or online. To learn more about filing an ADA complaint, visit www.ada.gov/filing_complaint.htm). To file an ADA complaint you may send the information requested at www.ada.gov/fact_on_complaint.htm to:
 
US Department of Justice 950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Civil Rights Division
Disability Rights Section 1425 NYAV
Washington, D.C. 20530
Fax: (202) 307-1197
 
You may also file a complaint online at www.ada.gov/complaint/.
If you have questions about filing an ADA complaint, please call:
ADA Information Line: 800-514-0301 (voice) or 800-514-0383 (TTY).

Main Section Telephone Number: 202-307-0663 (voice and TTY)
 

Educational Opportunities 

The Educational Opportunities Section enforces federal laws that protect students from harassment or discrimination. The Section is responsible for enforcing Title IV of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, and religion in public schools and institutions of higher learning; the Equal Educational Opportunities Act of 1974 which, among other things, requires states and school districts to provide English Language Learner (ELL) students with appropriate services to overcome language barriers; and the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prohibits disability discrimination. The Section also plays a significant role in enforcing Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (prohibiting discrimination on the basis of race, color, and national origin by recipients of federal funds); Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972 (prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sex by recipients of federal funds); and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (both of which address disability discrimination and appropriate disability-related services).

The Educational Opportunities Section accepts complaints of potential violations:

  • By e-mail to education@usdoj.gov
  • By telephone at (202) 514-4092 or 1-877-292-3804 (toll-free)
  • By facsimile at (202) 514-8337
  • By letter to the following address:
U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Educational Opportunities Section, PHB
Washington, D.C. 20530
 
In order to properly respond to a complaint, the Section requests that complainants provide their name, address, and the name of the school/school district/university where the alleged discrimination occurred. Additional information regarding how to file a complaint is available here.
 

Employment Litigation 

Individual Complaints of Employment Discrimination:

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (“Title VII”) prohibits discrimination, including harassment and retaliation, based on race, sex, color, religion, and national origin. If you believe you have been unlawfully denied an employment opportunity or otherwise discriminated against by an employer in violation of Title VII, you should contact the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The EEOC may be contacted by calling 1-800-669-4000 or 1-800-669-6820 (TTY).

The EEOC maintains a website with information on how to file a complaint.
 

Complaints of Employment Discrimination involving a Group
or Class of Individuals:

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (“Title VII”) prohibits discrimination, including harassment and retaliation, based on race, sex, color, religion, and national origin.

Under Title VII, the Attorney General has authority to bring suit against a state or local government employer where there is reason to believe that a "pattern or practice" of discrimination exists. Generally, these are factually and legally complex cases that seek to alter an employment practice, such as recruitment, hiring, assignment and promotions, which have the purpose or effect of denying employment or promotional opportunities to a class of individuals.

If you have reason to believe that a state or local government employer has unlawfully denied an employment opportunity or otherwise discriminated against a class of individuals by creating a "pattern or practice" of discrimination in violation of Title VII, you should contact the Department of Justice (DOJ). The DOJ may be contacted by calling (202) 514-3831 or (202) 514-6780 (TTY).
 

Complaints of Employment Discrimination
involving Service Members:

If you believe you have been discriminated against in employment because of your military service or you have been denied your right to return to your job after deployment, you may seek the assistance of the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR). You may contact the ESGR about your employment situation by calling toll-free 1 (800) 336-4590.

If you choose to file a USERRA claim with the Department of Labor (DOL), you may submit a signed hard copy of Form 1010 or electronically file. To submit a hard copy, you can download Form 1010 to your computer, complete the items on the form that are relevant to your claim, print the form, sign and date the form, and then either mail it, fax it or deliver it in person, to the following VETS office only. If you prefer to file Form 1010 electronically via the Internet instead of mailing a printed form, you may complete and submit an online form. It is important that you file with DOL or consult with a private attorney as soon as possible.

Veterans' Employment and Training Service
U.S. Department of Labor
ATTENTION: Form 1010
61 Forsyth Street, S.W., Room 6T85
Atlanta, Georgia 30303

FAX: (404) 562-2313

You also may retain a private attorney to handle your claim and file directly with a court of competent jurisdiction.

 

Federal Coordination and Compliance 

If you believe you or an individual that you or your organization represents has been discriminated against because of your race, color, or national origin, including limited English proficiency (LEP), by programs or activities receiving federal financial assistance, you may contact the Federal Coordination and Compliance Section. If you believe that you or an individual that you or your organization represents has been be excluded from participation in, denied the benefits of, or subjected to discrimination on the basis of your sex by any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance, you may contact the Federal Coordination and Compliance Section.

For information on language assistance services available, click here.

To file a complaint alleging discrimination in programs or activities of entities that receive federal assistance, please print and fill out the appropriate complaint form:

English: Complaint and Consent/Release Form - English (PDF) 
Español: Formulario de Denuncia / Formulario de Consentimiento (PDF) 
Chinese: 投訴表 / 投訴人同意書/授權協議書
Korean: 이의 제기 양식 / 이의 제기자 정보 공개 동의서 
Vietnamese: MẪU ĐƠN KHIẾU NẠI / MẪU CHẤP THUẬN/TIẾT LỘ THÔNG TIN CỦA NGƯỜI KHIẾU NẠI

Please mail the complaint to the following address:

 

Federal Coordination and Compliance Section - NWB
Civil Rights Division
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20530
 
Should you need assistance, our phone numbers are:
(888) 848-5306 - English and Spanish (ingles y español)
(202) 307-2222 (voice)
(202) 307-2678 (TDD)

Housing and Civil Enforcement 

Housing Discrimination:

Individuals who believe that they have been victims of housing discrimination may file a complaint with the Department of Housing and Urban Development [HUD] or file their own lawsuit in federal or state court. You must file the complaint with HUD within one year of the incident you believe to be housing discrimination. You have two years to file your own lawsuit in federal court.
 

Credit Discrimination:

Individuals who believe that they have been victims of housing discrimination regarding credit, such as the denial of a mortgage, may file a complaint with HUD. Individual complaints of discrimination in credit that are not housing-related are handled by the agencies who regulate the individual creditor.
 

Discrimination in Public Accommodation:

Individuals who believe that they have been victims of housing discrimination in public accommodations, such as a restaurant or hotel, may contact the Housing and Civil Enforcement Section. You may file your own lawsuit in federal court or state court and may have some rights under other federal laws, state laws, or local ordinance. You should consult with your local or state civil rights enforcement agency.

U.S. Department of Justice
Civil Rights Division
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Housing and Civil Enforcement Section, NWB
Washington, D.C. 20530
(202) 514-4713

Discrimination in Religious Land Use:

Individuals or entities who believe that they have been victims of discrimination against religious assemblies and institutions may contact the Housing and Civil Enforcement Section. Individuals may also file a lawsuit in federal court.

U.S. Department of Justice
Civil Rights Division
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Housing and Civil Enforcement Section, NWB
Washington, D.C. 20530
(202) 514-4713

Discrimination against Servicemembers:

Individuals who believe that their rights as servicemembers have been violated should consult the military legal assistance office locator. Dependents of servicemembers can also contact or visit local military legal assistance offices where they reside.
 

Immigrant and Employee Rights Section 

The Immigrant and Employee Rights Section enforces the anti-discrimination provision of the Immigration and Nationality Act, which prohibits discrimination based on an individual’s national origin or citizenship status in hiring, firing, or recruitment or referral for a fee. The statute also prohibits unfair documentary practices, or “document abuse,” during the employment eligibility verification (e.g. Form I-9 and/or E-Verify) process, and retaliation or intimidation.

IERcharge forms are available in English, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, French, Haitian Creole, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, Tagalog, and Vietnamese. To view and print these forms, click the links below. For more detailed instructions on how to file a charge, including how to file a charge electronically, please visit IER's Charge Page

English

Spanish (español)

Arabic  (العربية)

Chinese (中文)

French (français)

Haitian Creole (Kreyòl Ayisyen)

Korean (한국어)

Portuguese (português)

Russian (Pусский)

Tagalog

Vietnamese (Tiếng Việt)

 

Immigrant and Employee Rights Section
U.S. Department of Justice
Civil Rights Division
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W. (NYA)
Washington, D.C. 20530

Worker Hotline: 1-800-255-7688 [Voice] or 1-800-237-2515 [TTY]
Employer Hotline: 1-800-255-8155 [Voice] or 1-800-237-2515 [TTY]
Direct Office Line: 1-202-616-5594 [Voice] or 1-202-616-5525 [TTY]
Fax: (202) 616-5509

Email: ier@usdoj.gov

 

Special Litigation 

To file a complaint, write the Special Litigation Section (SPL) explaining the situation about which you are complaining, with as much detail as possible. If you are aware of similar incidents involving others, please include that information as well. SPL does not have legal authority to represent individuals. In most of SPL’s work, a single incident of mistreatment will not be sufficient to start an investigation. The Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA) and the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act (FACE) are exceptions to this general rule, and single incidents may be sufficient to start an investigation. Please include information on how to contact you if we need further information (such as an address, telephone number and e-mail address). Also, do not include original documents as we cannot guarantee their safe return. You can send information to:

 

Special Litigation Section
U.S. Department of Justice
Civil Rights Division
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Special Litigation Section
Washington, D.C. 20530

The Section can be reached by telephone: (202) 514-6255 or toll-free at (877) 218-5228.

 

Voting 

The Voting Section enforces the civil provisions of the federal laws that protect the right to vote, including the Voting Rights Act, the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act, the National Voter Registration Act, the Help America Vote Act and the Civil Rights Acts.

The Voting Section accepts complaints about possible violations of the federal voting rights laws -
Voting Section
Civil Rights Division
U.S. Department of Justice
Room 7254 - NWB
950 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W.
Washington, DC 20530


 

Updated November 14, 2017

Was this page helpful?

Was this page helpful?
Yes No