What You Need to Know About Ohio Statute of Limitations for Employment Claims
If you are dealing with an employment claim, you may not know how the Ohio statute of limitations applies to your case. Here’s everything you need to know about statutes of limitations for employment claims in Ohio.
A statute of limitations is a legal expiration date, limiting the timeframe for filing claims. In the past few years, Ohio laws have significantly shortened the statutes of limitations for employment claims, giving employees less time to file for benefits. If you have experienced unfair or dangerous workplace conditions, understand what the new statute of limitations laws can mean for your claims.
What is an Employment Claim?
Federal and state laws entitle employees to file claims and complaints against employers for work-related mistreatment.
In Ohio, employees can file claims with federal and state agencies, including:
- Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)
- Ohio Civil Rights Commission (OCRC)
- Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC)
Though you may sustain damage from workplace incidents for various reasons, most employment claims fall into four main categories:
- Personal injuy
- Contractual claims
Related: Taking Time Off Work in Ohio
Statute of Limitations for Discrimination and Harassment Claims
Starting April 15, 2021, Ohio’s Employment Law Uniformity Act reduced the statute of limitations for employment discrimination claims from six to two years. If you experience workplace discrimination or harassment, file your complaint immediately.
Despite shortening the statute of limitations for discrimination cases, Ohio’s Employment Law Uniformity Act also delays the filing process by:
- Requiring employees to exhaust administrative remedies
- Establishing an affirmative defense
Exhausting administrative remedies means an employee must file discrimination charges with the Ohio Civil Rights Commission (OCRC) before filing suit. An affirmative defense dismisses claims where an employee failed to take advantage of an employer’s preventive or corrective measures.
The statute of limitations begins after an incident occurs. If an in-house resolution is unsuccessful, you will have limited time to file your claim. Thus, you should file all complaints with urgency.
The statute of limitations for claims filed under the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) ranges from 180 to 300 days. If a state agency enforces a state or local law prohibiting employment discrimination, the 180-day deadline becomes 300 days.
Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Claims
Starting September 29, 2017, House Bill 27 reduced the statute of limitations for workers’ compensation claims from two years to one year but extended the appeal deadline from 60 days to 150 days. The new timeframe includes all workplace injuries, including work-related deaths.
If you experience a work-related injury or illness, file your personal injury claim with Ohio’s Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC). The BWC makes few exceptions to the statute of limitations. Therefore, timeliness is crucial.
Statute of Limitations for Contractual Claims
Starting June 16, 2021, Senate Bill 13 shortened the statute of limitations for contractual claims for written contracts from eight years to six. Senate Bill 13 also reduced the claim filing period for oral agreements from six years to four.
Related: Ohio Sick Leave Laws: An Overview
Employees file contractual claims when a breach of contract, such as wrongful termination of employment, occurs. Some contracts may include employer-specific statutes of limitations for contractual claims. Consult an attorney before signing any contract to avoid waiving your contractual rights.
FAQs About Ohio Statute of Limitations for Employment Claims
Under the revised statute of limitations, can someone retroactively deny my employment claims?
Employers cannot deny employment claims retroactively. If a workplace incident occurred before the implementation of new limitations, past statutes of limitations still apply to your case.
Is the statute of limitations for employment claims the same in every state?
Each state has different statutes of limitations for employment claims. However, all complaints filed to the EEOC have 180 to 300-day time limits.
Which employment claim applies to my case?
Depending on the circumstances, an attorney will suggest different paths for you to receive compensation for unlawful employment practices. Consult an experienced attorney to understand your situation and options.