Laws and Regulations

These links will take you to specific equal employment opportunity laws and regulations, and to sites where you can search for employment laws and regulations. These laws and regulations have been interpreted through numerous court decisions, and enforcement agency opinions, that you must consider to understand the current law on particular issues. The descriptions following the links below provide only a brief summary of each law, regulation, or site. You must examine the linked material to learn the specific provisions and coverage of the laws and regulations.

United States of America

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964

Prohibits employment discrimination because of race, color, sex, national origin, and religion. Prohibits retaliation for opposing discrimination, filing a complaint, or participating in a related proceeding.

Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967

Prohibits employment discrimination because of age against persons age 40 and older. Prohibits retaliation for opposing age discrimination, filing a complaint, or participating in a related proceeding. This law was amended by the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act which sets minimum criteria that must be satisfied before a waiver of any ADEA right is considered a "knowing and voluntary" waiver.

Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990, Titles I and V

Prohibits employment discrimination because of: mental and physical disabilities that substantially limit a major life activity; or having a record of a disability; or being regarded as having a disability. Requires reasonable accommodation of mental and physical disabilities.

Sections 102 and 103 of the Civil Rights Act of 1991

Provides for the recovery of compensatory and punitive damages in actions under Title VII and the Americans With Disabilities Act, and addresses other aspects of discrimination law, including disparate impact claims, mixed motive cases, seniority systems, coverage of U. S. citizens employed abroad by American corporations, and expert witness fees.

Equal Pay Act of 1963

Prohibits wage differentials based on sex for jobs that require equal skill, effort, and responsibility, and are performed under similar working conditions in the same establishment ("equal pay for equal work").

Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978

This law amended Title VII to make it illegal to discriminate against a woman because of pregnancy, childbirth, or a medical condition related to pregnancy or childbirth.

Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Sections 501 and 505

Prohibits employment discrimination against disabled persons who are employed by federal government agencies, federal contractors, and recipients of federal financial assistance. Requires federal contractors to use affirmative action in recruiting and employing disabled persons.

Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 1988

This law makes it illegal to discriminate against employees or applicants because of genetic information. Genetic information includes information about an individual's genetic tests and the genetic tests of an individual's family members, as well as information about any disease, disorder or condition of an individual's family members (i.e. an individual's family medical history).

Federal Family and Medical Leave Act

Provides that eligible employees may take up to 12 weeks of leave during a 12-month period if an employee's serious health condition makes the employee unable to perform the essential functions of their job; or to care for a newborn or adopted child; or to care for the employee's spouse, child, or parent who has a serious helath condition.

EEOC Regulations, 29 CFR Section 1600 et.seq.

Proposed and existing regulations of the U. S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission that describe its handling of charges of employment discrimination, and its interpretations of legal issues.

EEOC's Regulations on Federal Sector Equal Employment Opportunity,
29 CFR Section 1614

These regulations describe the process for handling employment discrimination complaints made by employees of most federal government agencies.

Federal Executive Order 11246

This executive order, and others administered by the U. S. Department of Labor, Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs, require non-discrimination and reporting by federal government contractors and subcontractors.

Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs Compliance Laws and Regulations

Regulations applicable to federal government contractors regarding non-discrimination in employment, affirmative action, and compliance reviews.

United States Code, Title 42, The Public Health and Welfare, Chapter 21, Civil Rights

Federal statutes that protect civil rights, including Sections 1981, 1981a, and 1983.

United States Department of Agriculture, Immigration Reform and Control Act Non-Discrimination Provisions

Discrimination against aliens authorized to work, or discrimination in favor of authorized alien workers, is unlawful for farm employers with four or more employees.

U.S. Uniform Guidelines on Employee Selection Procedures

Guidelines issued jointly by the U. S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Department of Labor, and the Department of Justice on discrimination in employee selection procedures.

Other Sources of Laws and Regulations

Thomas Legislative Information on the Internet

This is a source of legislative information from the U. S. Library of Congress.


A site that provides links to federal laws and regulations.

Nolo Press Self-Help Law Center

Contains plain-lanaguage information about employment laws, and other laws. Search for information on particular employment law topics.

Cornell University Legal Information Institute - Employment Discrimination Law Materials

A source of information about some federal employment laws, and selected laws of some states, including California.

FindLaw Internet Legal Resources

A comprehensive source of information about the law, government agencies, legal organizations, law schools, and law firms.

This is a good portal site that provides access to information about the federal government, and its agencies and programs.

The 'Lectric Law Library's Lawopedia on Employment & Labor

A site that "has all sorts of workplace related materials for employers & employees."

This was previously the U.S. House of Representatives Internet Law Library, that is now administered by

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