Employment Discrimination in West Virginia

Avoid employment discrimination against protected classes in West Virginia.

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What are the protected classes in West Virginia?

In all 50 states, federal law makes it illegal to discriminate based on:

  • Race
  • Color
  • National origin
  • Religion
  • Sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, and related medical conditions)
  • Disability
  • Age (40 and older)
  • Citizenship status
  • Genetic information

In addition, West Virginia state law also prohibits discrimination based on:

  • Race
  • Color
  • National origin
  • Religion
  • Sex
  • Disability: physical or mental, blindness
  • Age (40 and older)
  • AIDS/HIV
  • Off-duty tobacco use

How many employees must a company in West Virginia have to be subject to antidiscrimination laws?

Under federal law, companies with 15 or more employees are covered by Title VII, the primary law prohibiting employment discrimination, the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability, and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act, which prohibits discrimination based on genetic information. Companies with 20 or more employees are subject to the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), the federal law that prohibits discrimination against employees 40 years or older. Companies with four or more employees must comply with the employment discrimination provisions of the Immigration Reform and Control Act, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of citizenship status. And all companies of any size must pay men and women equally for doing equal work, by virtue of the Equal Pay Act.

In West Virginia, companies with 12 or more employees (one or more employees for gender-based wage discrimination) are subject to the state's antidiscrimination law.

What government agency regulates workplace discrimination in West Virginia?

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is the federal agency that regulates workplace discrimination. You can contact the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission by calling 800-669-4000 or check out its website at www.eeoc.gov. The website will help you locate an EEOC field office in West Virginia.

The Human Rights Commission enforces state antidiscrimination law in West Virginia. You can contact the Human Rights Commission at 304-558-2616 or 888-676-5546.

For more information on employment discrimination, see The Manager's Legal Handbook, by attorneys Lisa Guerin and Amy DelPo (Nolo).

Last updated on 2/01/10.

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