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Mixed Case Complaints

Some employment actions which may be the subject of a discrimination complaint may also be appealed to the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB). In such cases, the employee must elect to proceed with a complaint as a "mixed case complaint" under EEOC's complaint procedures, or a "mixed case appeal" before the MSPB. Whichever is filed first is considered an election to proceed in that forum.

Mixed case complaints are processed similarly to other complaints of discrimination, with the following notable exceptions:

  • The Service has 120 calendar days from the date of the filing of the mixed case complaint to issue a final decision, and the complainant may appeal the matter to the MSPB or file a civil action any time thereafter;
  • If the complainant elects to appeal the Final Agency Decision (FAD), the appeal must be made to the MSPB, not the EEOC, within 30 calendar days of receipt of the FAD;
  • at the completion of the investigation the complainant does not have the right to request a hearing before an EEOC AJ, and the agency must issue a decision within 45 calendar days.

Individuals who have filed either a mixed case complaint or a mixed case appeal, and who have received a final decision from the MSPB, may petition the EEOC to review the MSPB final decision.

In contrast to non-mixed matters, individuals who wish to file a civil action in mixed- case matters must file within 30 calendar days (not 90) of receipt of:

  • the DOI's final decision;
  • the MSPB's final decision; or
  • the EEOC's decision on a petition to review. Alternatively, a civil action may be filed after 120 calendar days from the date of filing the mixed case complaint with EOD or the mixed case appeal with the MSPB if there has been no final decision on the complaint or appeal, or 180 calendar days after filing a petition to review with EEOC if there has been no decision by EEOC on the petition.

Last updated: March 30, 2012