Code of the District of Columbia

§ 32–1231.07. Administrative enforcement by OHR.

(a) An employee who claims that an employer has violated the employee's rights under this chapter and seeks redress may file a complaint with OHR.

(b) OHR, which shall administer this chapter, shall establish administrative procedures for an aggrieved person to file a complaint against the employer alleged to have violated this chapter, which shall include:

(1) An investigation of the complaint and an attempt to resolve the complaint by conference or mediation;

(2) If the complaint is not resolved, a determination on the existence of probable cause to believe a violation of this chapter has occurred;

(3) If it is determined probable cause exists:

(A) An attempt to resolve the complaint by conciliation as set forth under § 2-1403.06;

(B) If conciliation fails, certifying the case for a hearing before the Commission on Human Rights as set forth under § 2-1403.10, or for matters involving the District government, forwarding the case to an independent hearing examiner as set forth under 4 DCMR § 116; and

(C) A requirement that the hearing under this paragraph be conducted in accordance with subchapter I of Chapter 5 of Title 2; and

(4) The right of the employee to have an attorney authorized to practice law in the District of Columbia and retained by the employee present at the hearing.

(c) If the Commission on Human Rights or an independent hearing examiner determines, after the hearing, that the employer has violated any provision of this chapter, the Commission shall order or the independent hearing examiner shall recommend the employer to provide affirmative remedies, including:

(1) Back pay for lost wages resulting from the employer's violation of this chapter;

(2) Reinstatement or other injunctive relief; and

(3) Reasonable attorney's fees and costs of enforcement.

(d)(1) To compensate the District for the costs of investigating and remedying a violation, OHR may also order the employer to pay to the District a penalty of not more than $ 500 for each day or portion thereof that the violation continues for each employee against whom the violation occurred or continues.

(2) The funds recovered by the District under this subsection shall be deposited in the Pregnant Workers Protection Fund established by § 32-1231.12.

(e) If an employer is determined to not be in compliance with this chapter, OHR may make a referral to licensing agencies as provided under § 2-1403.17.