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H.R. 3972 (113th): Fair Employment Opportunity Act of 2014

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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Jan 29, 2014.

Fair Employment Opportunity Act of 2014 - Declares it an unlawful practice for certain employers with at least 15 employees for each working day in each of at least 20 calendar weeks in the current or preceding calendar year to: (1) refuse to consider or offer employment to an individual based on present or past unemployment regardless of the length of time such individual was unemployed, (2) publish an advertisement or announcement for any job with provisions indicating that such an unemployed status disqualifies an individual and that an employer will not consider an applicant based on such status, and (3) direct or request that an employment agency account for such status when screening or referring applicants.

Prohibits an employment agency (including agents and persons maintaining a website publishing job advertisements or announcements), based on such an individual's status as unemployed, from: (1) refusing to consider or refer an individual for employment; (2) limiting, segregating, or classifying individuals in any manner limiting access to job information; or (3) publishing an advertisement or announcement for any job vacancy that includes provisions indicating that such an individual is disqualified and that an employer will not consider such individuals.

Allows consideration of an individual's status as unemployed where an individual's employment in a similar or related job for a period of time reasonably proximate to the hiring of such individual is a bona fide occupational qualification reasonably necessary to successful performance of the job being filled.

Authorizes, subject to termination upon the filing of certain complaints by the Secretary of Labor, one or more persons for and in behalf of the affected individual, or the affected individual and other individuals similarly situated, to bring actions in federal or state court for specified actual damages and equitable relief including employment and compensatory and punitive damages.

Directs the Secretary to: (1) receive, investigate, and attempt to resolve complaints according to specified provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938; and (2) pay directly to each affected individual applicable sums recovered in any civil actions brought by the Secretary under this Act.

Sets forth a two-year statute of limitations period (three years for willful violations) for specified civil actions under this Act, subject to tolling when the Secretary is considering certain complaints.