The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) published the “Nondiscrimination Obligations of Federal Contractors and Subcontractors: Procedures to Resolve Potential Employment Discrimination” final rule in the Federal Register. The final rule increases clarity and transparency for federal contractors, establishes clear parameters for OFCCP resolution procedures, and enhances the efficient enforcement of equal employment opportunity laws. It also codifies the guidelines for issuing predetermination notices (PDN) and Notices of Violation (NOV).

There were several notable changes from the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) to the final rule:

Two new terms are defined in the final rule, “qualitative evidence” and “quantitative evidence.” These definitions serve to clarify the types of evidence OFCCP relies on to support the issuance of a PDN or NOV.

The final rule differentiates between the evidence necessary dependent on the theory of discrimination at issue.

Further, the timeframe for contractors to respond to a PDN increased from 15 days to 30 days.

In addition to these changes, the final rule also codifies the expedited conciliation option proposed in the NPRM.