Employment Discrimination in Missouri

Employment discrimination in Missouri is a serious issue that requires the legal services of an employment law lawyer. You have the right to file a complaint about Missouri employment discrimination with the proper state agency, as well as pursue a claim at the federal level.

The key is to collect and organize enough evidence to convince the state or federal agency to approve your claim for workplace discrimination in Missouri. If you want to file a claim, you have to submit your documents before the statute of limitations expires.

What Kind of Workplace Discrimination Laws Does Missouri Have?

The United States Congress has enacted two landmark discrimination laws. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 represents a comprehensive law that covers several protected classes in the workplace. One protected class that did not receive coverage by Title VII was older workers. To make up for the absence of legal protections for older workers, Congress passed the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) three years after making Title VII a discrimination law.

Missouri law views employment discrimination as an act that treats a person or a group of people differently from other employees in the workplace. The Missouri Human Rights Act covers the same protected classes that Title VII protects, but the Missouri workplace discrimination law adds a couple of protected classes. If you have been discriminated against at work in Missouri, an employment law attorney can determine which of the two employment discrimination laws you should refer to when you file a complaint.

What are the Protected Classes According to State and Federal Law?

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 covers the same protected classes in each of the 50 states.

  • Sex
  • Race
  • Color
  • Disability
  • National Origin
  • Gender identity
  • Religion
  • Sexual orientation
  • Citizenship status

The Missouri Human Rights Act Covers the same protected classes that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act protects. One difference between the two laws is Missouri protects classes of workers based on ancestry. Ancestry refers to a worker’s ethnic roots, while national origin defines the country where a worker was born. For example, an employee was born in Great Britain, but the worker’s ancestry is mostly Italian.

What Employers Are Covered by Workplace Discrimination Laws in Missouri?

Federal discrimination law covers employers that have a minimum of 15 employees. The Missouri Human Rights Act expands employer coverage to include companies that have at least six workers.

If you faced discrimination from a Missouri employer that has between six and 14 employees, you should file your complaint with the state agency that handles employment discrimination claims       

What State Agency Enforces These Laws?

The Missouri Commission on Human Rights (MCHR) regulates and enforces all employment discrimination laws in the state. State regulators have listed the types of employment issues that can trigger a Missouri Workplace discrimination claim.

  • Terminations
  • Compensation
  • Promotions
  • Testing
  • Training
  • Use of company facilities
  • Layoffs
  • Transfers
  • Job interviews
  • Benefits

How Do I File an Employment Discrimination Claim in Missouri?

You can file a workplace discrimination claim either with the Missouri Commission on Human Rights (MCHR) or the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The two government agencies operate on a work-sharing agreement, which means that a claim filed with one agency automatically is sent to the other agency.

To file a claim with the MCHR, contact the closest of the following offices:

Jefferson City

P.O. Box 1129

3315 West Truman Boulevard

Jefferson City, MO 65102-1129

Phone: (573) 751-3325

Fax: (573) 751-2905

TDD: (573) 526-5091



108 West Center 

Sikeston, MO 63801-3040 

Phone: (573) 472-5320 

FAX: (573) 472-5321 

TDD: (573) 472-5223 


St. Louis

122 Spruce St.

Room 8.100

Phone: (1-800) 669-4000 

FAX: (314) 539-7894

TTY: (1-800) 669-6820


The EEOC offers two options for filing a claim in Missouri.

Kansas City Area Office

400 State Avenue, Suite 905

Kansas City, KS 66101

Phone: 913-551-5655

TTY: 913-551-5657


St. Louis District Office

Robert A. Young Building

1222 Spruce Street, Room 8.100

St. Louis, MO 63103

Phone: 314-539-7800

TTY: 314-539-7803

What is the Statute of Limitations for Filing a Discrimination Claim in Missouri?

If you have been discriminated against at work, you have 180 days to file a complaint with either the MCHR or EEOC. The 180-day timeline begins on the last date when you experienced discrimination in the workplace. Any employment discrimination claims that arrive after the 180-day deadline gets pulled from the system by a county clerk.

How Do Get Help Filing an Employment Discrimination Claim in Missouri?

Working with an employment law lawyer may boost your chances of getting a claim approved by either the MCHR or EEOC. An attorney can keep you on track to file your claim before the end of 180 days, as well as may ensure you present the strongest case possible.

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