State Law: Nevada


The Law

Nevada, Chapter 233 and Chapter 613 of the Nevada Revised Statutes make it illegal for an employer or labor organization to discriminate against someone on the basis of sex.

In Nevada, for purposes of equal opportunity in the workplace, an employer is defined as "any person who has 15 or more employees for each working day in each of 20 or more calendar weeks in the current or preceding calendar year, but does not include:

    a) The United States or any corporation wholly owned by the United States.

    b) Any Indian tribe.

    c) Any private membership club exempt from taxation pursuant to 26 U.S.C. § 501(c)."

Thus, the Nevada statute against discrimination in the workplace applies only to employers with 15+ employees, which is the same number of employees required for federal jurisdiction under Title VII. (See Chapter 613, Section 310.)

The Nevada Equal Rights Commission investigates complaints of employment discrimination on the basis of race, national origin, color, religion, sex (gender and/or orientation), age, and disability.

Pregnancy discrimination is illegal in Nevada. Chapter 613 says, "If an employer grants leave with pay, leave without pay, or leave without loss of seniority to his employees for sickness or disability because of a medical condition, it is an unlawful employment practice to fail or refuse to extend the same benefits to any female employee who is pregnant. The female employee who is pregnant must be allowed to use the leave before and after childbirth, miscarriage or other natural resolution of her pregnancy, if the leave is granted, accrued or allowed to accumulate as a part of her employment benefits."

Filing A Complaint

The Nevada Equal Rights Commission investigates complaints filed with it free of charge. Complaints under state law must be filed within 180 days of the date you were discriminated against. You may file a complaint by contacting one of the three regional offices in Nevada. They are: North Las Vegas- 2827 Las Vegas Blvd. N, N. Las Vegas, NV 89030, (702) 486-0224; Reno - 1325 Corporate Blvd., Reno, NV 89502, (775) 688-1288; and Las Vegas- 1515 E. Tropicana Ave., Suite 590, Las Vegas, NV, 89119, (702) 486-7161.

You will be asked to fill out an Intake Inquiry Form.

The Commission tries to achieve early settlement in most cases, after which it will conduct an investigation if the complaint is not settled or withdrawn. An investigator will be assigned to your case, who will act as a neutral decision-maker to determine whether there is reasonable cause to believe you have been discriminated against and your rights violated.

If probable cause is found, you and your employer may be required to attend conciliation in an attempt to negotiate a settlement. If settlement negotiations fail, a public hearing will be held.

You may decide to go through the federal or state court process instead of the Commission’s investigative process. You must first file with the EEOC or Nevada Commission and request a Notice of Right to Sue letter in order to file in court. The attorney you hire can explain this process to you.

Many Nevada attorneys choose to file employment discrimination cases in federal court. However, most cases may be brought in either state or federal court. State law does not allow compensatory (emotional pain/suffering) or punitive damages, which are recoverable under federal law.

For more information and a more detailed explanation of the complaint process, please visit the Nevada Equal Rights Commission website.