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What is the EEO-1 Report and Do I need to File It?

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Businesses across the fruited plain will be occupied with tax filings over the next several months. Once the annual tax season comes to an end, there will be little time to breathe. There is a plethora of other reports to file, including those having to do with the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and EEOC compliance.

One of the least talked about forms is the EEO-1 Report, which must be filed by qualifying employers no later than the end of May. This is a report that is typically filed online using employment data taken from the fourth quarter of the previous year. Not all employers are required to file the EEO-1, but those who are must do so accurately and in a timely manner.

What is the EEO-1 Report?

The EEO-1 Report is essentially an employment survey mandated by law. It is intended to do two things. First, it forces employers to provide data proving that they are in compliance with anti-discrimination laws. Second, it provides the EEOC with research data.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act prevents the EEOC from making any of the data gleaned from individual EEO-1 reports public. However, numerous court cases have determined that the prohibition doesn’t apply to data provided by federal government contractors.

Who Must File the Report?

With a basic understanding of the EEO-1 Report at hand, let us talk about who must file it. According to Dallas-based BenefitMall, most small businesses with fewer than 50 employees do not have to file it. Only companies meeting one of the following conditions must file:

  • 100 or more employees and subject to title VII of the Civil Rights Act;
  • Fewer than 100 employees but part of a corporate entity that has total employment in excess of 100 and is subject to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act; or
  • Prime or first-tier federal contractors subject to Executive Order 11246, with at least 50 employees and a prime or first-tier contract of $50,000 or more.

Note that the third provision must be fulfilled in all aspects before the company is required to file the report. For example, just being a primary or first-tier contractor with 50 or more employees does not force a company to file. The company must also have the required contract value on its books.

How is Report Filed?

Filing the EEO-1 Report is as easy as filing payroll taxes, according to BenefitMall. The filing deadline is May 31. Companies filing for the first time visit the EEOC website and complete a registration form. A username and password are provided at the time of registration.

The EEOC mandates that annual EEO-1 Reports to be filed online, either directly through the EEOC website or by electronically transmitting a data file in an approved format. There is no provision for printing a paper form and mailing it to the EEOC.

Employers complete the report using data from a single pay period from the fourth quarter of the year being reported. For example, completing the 2020 report would cover data taken from a single pay period in either October, November, or December 2019. Both full- and part-time employees must be included in the report.

There is a lot more to the EEO-1 Report than has been discussed in this post. Needless to say, the report represents yet another layer of regulatory bureaucracy companies must deal with. If you are not sure whether or not your company is required to file the report, consult a payroll specialist or an attorney. Whatever you do, do not ignore it.

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