Complaint Investigation Process
The Saint Paul Human Rights Division aims to provide exceptional customer service by investigating cases in less than the 365 days required by law. Our average investigation time has consistently been under 365 days.
The following information provides a brief overview of our investigation process.
Read Guidelines for the Complainant for a more detailed explanation of the process.
- Complainant Files a Charge: An individual believing that he or she has been discriminated against files a complaint with our office stating the protected class, the harm suffered, the area and basis of the alleged discrimination. This individual is called the Complainant or Charging Party. Under the Human Rights Ordinance, the Complainant cannot be retaliated against for filing a charge.
- Respondent Submits a Position Statement and Response to the Initial Information Request: The Respondent is the party against whom a charge has been filed. In the Position Statement, the Respondent provides his or her explanation of events and reasons for why they took place. In the Response to the Initial Information Request, the Respondent provides confidential documents necessary to the investigation.
- Rebuttal: The Complainant responds to the Respondent’s position statement.
- Management and Witness Interviews: The Human Rights Investigator may then choose to interview management, if applicable, and other witnesses. These interviews are confidential. Under the Human Rights Ordinance, a witness cannot be retaliated against for participating in an interview.
- Probable Cause Determination: After evaluating all the facts in light of applicable law, the Human Rights Specialist, subject to Director approval, makes a recommendation on whether there is probable cause that discrimination took place. Probable cause means more likely than not.
- Appeal: If no probable cause (NPC) is determined, the Complainant can file an administrative appeal.