130th Ohio General Assembly
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S. B. No. 30  As Introduced
As Introduced

129th General Assembly
Regular Session
2011-2012
S. B. No. 30


Senator Tavares 



A BILL
To amend sections 4112.02, 4112.05, 4112.08, and 4112.14 of the Revised Code to specify that discrimination by an employer against any person because of the person's credit history is an unlawful discriminatory practice under the Ohio Civil Rights Law.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF OHIO:
Section 1. That sections 4112.02, 4112.05, 4112.08, and 4112.14 of the Revised Code be amended to read as follows:
Sec. 4112.02.  It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice:
(A) For any employer, because of the race, color, religion, sex, military status, national origin, disability, age, or ancestry of any person, to discharge without just cause, to refuse to hire, or otherwise to discriminate against that person with respect to hire, tenure, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, or any matter directly or indirectly related to employment.
(B) For an employment agency or personnel placement service, because of race, color, religion, sex, military status, national origin, disability, age, or ancestry, to do any of the following:
(1) Refuse or fail to accept, register, classify properly, or refer for employment, or otherwise discriminate against any person;
(2) Comply with a request from an employer for referral of applicants for employment if the request directly or indirectly indicates that the employer fails to comply with the provisions of sections 4112.01 to 4112.07 of the Revised Code.
(C) For any labor organization to do any of the following:
(1) Limit or classify its membership on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, military status, national origin, disability, age, or ancestry;
(2) Discriminate against, limit the employment opportunities of, or otherwise adversely affect the employment status, wages, hours, or employment conditions of any person as an employee because of race, color, religion, sex, military status, national origin, disability, age, or ancestry.
(D) For any employer, labor organization, or joint labor-management committee controlling apprentice training programs to discriminate against any person because of race, color, religion, sex, military status, national origin, disability, or ancestry in admission to, or employment in, any program established to provide apprentice training.
(E) Except where based on a bona fide occupational qualification certified in advance by the commission, for any employer, employment agency, personnel placement service, or labor organization, prior to employment or admission to membership, to do any of the following:
(1) Elicit or attempt to elicit any information concerning the race, color, religion, sex, military status, national origin, disability, age, or ancestry of an applicant for employment or membership;
(2) Make or keep a record of the race, color, religion, sex, military status, national origin, disability, age, or ancestry of any applicant for employment or membership;
(3) Use any form of application for employment, or personnel or membership blank, seeking to elicit information regarding race, color, religion, sex, military status, national origin, disability, age, or ancestry; but an employer holding a contract containing a nondiscrimination clause with the government of the United States, or any department or agency of that government, may require an employee or applicant for employment to furnish documentary proof of United States citizenship and may retain that proof in the employer's personnel records and may use photographic or fingerprint identification for security purposes;
(4) Print or publish or cause to be printed or published any notice or advertisement relating to employment or membership indicating any preference, limitation, specification, or discrimination, based upon race, color, religion, sex, military status, national origin, disability, age, or ancestry;
(5) Announce or follow a policy of denying or limiting, through a quota system or otherwise, employment or membership opportunities of any group because of the race, color, religion, sex, military status, national origin, disability, age, or ancestry of that group;
(6) Utilize in the recruitment or hiring of persons any employment agency, personnel placement service, training school or center, labor organization, or any other employee-referring source known to discriminate against persons because of their race, color, religion, sex, military status, national origin, disability, age, or ancestry.
(F) For any person seeking employment to publish or cause to be published any advertisement that specifies or in any manner indicates that person's race, color, religion, sex, military status, national origin, disability, age, or ancestry, or expresses a limitation or preference as to the race, color, religion, sex, military status, national origin, disability, age, or ancestry of any prospective employer.
(G) For any proprietor or any employee, keeper, or manager of a place of public accommodation to deny to any person, except for reasons applicable alike to all persons regardless of race, color, religion, sex, military status, national origin, disability, age, or ancestry, the full enjoyment of the accommodations, advantages, facilities, or privileges of the place of public accommodation.
(H) For any person to do any of the following:
(1) Refuse to sell, transfer, assign, rent, lease, sublease, or finance housing accommodations, refuse to negotiate for the sale or rental of housing accommodations, or otherwise deny or make unavailable housing accommodations because of race, color, religion, sex, military status, familial status, ancestry, disability, or national origin;
(2) Represent to any person that housing accommodations are not available for inspection, sale, or rental, when in fact they are available, because of race, color, religion, sex, military status, familial status, ancestry, disability, or national origin;
(3) Discriminate against any person in the making or purchasing of loans or the provision of other financial assistance for the acquisition, construction, rehabilitation, repair, or maintenance of housing accommodations, or any person in the making or purchasing of loans or the provision of other financial assistance that is secured by residential real estate, because of race, color, religion, sex, military status, familial status, ancestry, disability, or national origin or because of the racial composition of the neighborhood in which the housing accommodations are located, provided that the person, whether an individual, corporation, or association of any type, lends money as one of the principal aspects or incident to the person's principal business and not only as a part of the purchase price of an owner-occupied residence the person is selling nor merely casually or occasionally to a relative or friend;
(4) Discriminate against any person in the terms or conditions of selling, transferring, assigning, renting, leasing, or subleasing any housing accommodations or in furnishing facilities, services, or privileges in connection with the ownership, occupancy, or use of any housing accommodations, including the sale of fire, extended coverage, or homeowners insurance, because of race, color, religion, sex, military status, familial status, ancestry, disability, or national origin or because of the racial composition of the neighborhood in which the housing accommodations are located;
(5) Discriminate against any person in the terms or conditions of any loan of money, whether or not secured by mortgage or otherwise, for the acquisition, construction, rehabilitation, repair, or maintenance of housing accommodations because of race, color, religion, sex, military status, familial status, ancestry, disability, or national origin or because of the racial composition of the neighborhood in which the housing accommodations are located;
(6) Refuse to consider without prejudice the combined income of both husband and wife for the purpose of extending mortgage credit to a married couple or either member of a married couple;
(7) Print, publish, or circulate any statement or advertisement, or make or cause to be made any statement or advertisement, relating to the sale, transfer, assignment, rental, lease, sublease, or acquisition of any housing accommodations, or relating to the loan of money, whether or not secured by mortgage or otherwise, for the acquisition, construction, rehabilitation, repair, or maintenance of housing accommodations, that indicates any preference, limitation, specification, or discrimination based upon race, color, religion, sex, military status, familial status, ancestry, disability, or national origin, or an intention to make any such preference, limitation, specification, or discrimination;
(8) Except as otherwise provided in division (H)(8) or (17) of this section, make any inquiry, elicit any information, make or keep any record, or use any form of application containing questions or entries concerning race, color, religion, sex, military status, familial status, ancestry, disability, or national origin in connection with the sale or lease of any housing accommodations or the loan of any money, whether or not secured by mortgage or otherwise, for the acquisition, construction, rehabilitation, repair, or maintenance of housing accommodations. Any person may make inquiries, and make and keep records, concerning race, color, religion, sex, military status, familial status, ancestry, disability, or national origin for the purpose of monitoring compliance with this chapter.
(9) Include in any transfer, rental, or lease of housing accommodations any restrictive covenant, or honor or exercise, or attempt to honor or exercise, any restrictive covenant;
(10) Induce or solicit, or attempt to induce or solicit, a housing accommodations listing, sale, or transaction by representing that a change has occurred or may occur with respect to the racial, religious, sexual, military status, familial status, or ethnic composition of the block, neighborhood, or other area in which the housing accommodations are located, or induce or solicit, or attempt to induce or solicit, a housing accommodations listing, sale, or transaction by representing that the presence or anticipated presence of persons of any race, color, religion, sex, military status, familial status, ancestry, disability, or national origin, in the block, neighborhood, or other area will or may have results including, but not limited to, the following:
(a) The lowering of property values;
(b) A change in the racial, religious, sexual, military status, familial status, or ethnic composition of the block, neighborhood, or other area;
(c) An increase in criminal or antisocial behavior in the block, neighborhood, or other area;
(d) A decline in the quality of the schools serving the block, neighborhood, or other area.
(11) Deny any person access to or membership or participation in any multiple-listing service, real estate brokers' organization, or other service, organization, or facility relating to the business of selling or renting housing accommodations, or discriminate against any person in the terms or conditions of that access, membership, or participation, on account of race, color, religion, sex, military status, familial status, national origin, disability, or ancestry;
(12) Coerce, intimidate, threaten, or interfere with any person in the exercise or enjoyment of, or on account of that person's having exercised or enjoyed or having aided or encouraged any other person in the exercise or enjoyment of, any right granted or protected by division (H) of this section;
(13) Discourage or attempt to discourage the purchase by a prospective purchaser of housing accommodations, by representing that any block, neighborhood, or other area has undergone or might undergo a change with respect to its religious, racial, sexual, military status, familial status, or ethnic composition;
(14) Refuse to sell, transfer, assign, rent, lease, sublease, or finance, or otherwise deny or withhold, a burial lot from any person because of the race, color, sex, military status, familial status, age, ancestry, disability, or national origin of any prospective owner or user of the lot;
(15) Discriminate in the sale or rental of, or otherwise make unavailable or deny, housing accommodations to any buyer or renter because of a disability of any of the following:
(a) The buyer or renter;
(b) A person residing in or intending to reside in the housing accommodations after they are sold, rented, or made available;
(c) Any individual associated with the person described in division (H)(15)(b) of this section.
(16) Discriminate in the terms, conditions, or privileges of the sale or rental of housing accommodations to any person or in the provision of services or facilities to any person in connection with the housing accommodations because of a disability of any of the following:
(a) That person;
(b) A person residing in or intending to reside in the housing accommodations after they are sold, rented, or made available;
(c) Any individual associated with the person described in division (H)(16)(b) of this section.
(17) Except as otherwise provided in division (H)(17) of this section, make an inquiry to determine whether an applicant for the sale or rental of housing accommodations, a person residing in or intending to reside in the housing accommodations after they are sold, rented, or made available, or any individual associated with that person has a disability, or make an inquiry to determine the nature or severity of a disability of the applicant or such a person or individual. The following inquiries may be made of all applicants for the sale or rental of housing accommodations, regardless of whether they have disabilities:
(a) An inquiry into an applicant's ability to meet the requirements of ownership or tenancy;
(b) An inquiry to determine whether an applicant is qualified for housing accommodations available only to persons with disabilities or persons with a particular type of disability;
(c) An inquiry to determine whether an applicant is qualified for a priority available to persons with disabilities or persons with a particular type of disability;
(d) An inquiry to determine whether an applicant currently uses a controlled substance in violation of section 2925.11 of the Revised Code or a substantively comparable municipal ordinance;
(e) An inquiry to determine whether an applicant at any time has been convicted of or pleaded guilty to any offense, an element of which is the illegal sale, offer to sell, cultivation, manufacture, other production, shipment, transportation, delivery, or other distribution of a controlled substance.
(18)(a) Refuse to permit, at the expense of a person with a disability, reasonable modifications of existing housing accommodations that are occupied or to be occupied by the person with a disability, if the modifications may be necessary to afford the person with a disability full enjoyment of the housing accommodations. This division does not preclude a landlord of housing accommodations that are rented or to be rented to a disabled tenant from conditioning permission for a proposed modification upon the disabled tenant's doing one or more of the following:
(i) Providing a reasonable description of the proposed modification and reasonable assurances that the proposed modification will be made in a workerlike manner and that any required building permits will be obtained prior to the commencement of the proposed modification;
(ii) Agreeing to restore at the end of the tenancy the interior of the housing accommodations to the condition they were in prior to the proposed modification, but subject to reasonable wear and tear during the period of occupancy, if it is reasonable for the landlord to condition permission for the proposed modification upon the agreement;
(iii) Paying into an interest-bearing escrow account that is in the landlord's name, over a reasonable period of time, a reasonable amount of money not to exceed the projected costs at the end of the tenancy of the restoration of the interior of the housing accommodations to the condition they were in prior to the proposed modification, but subject to reasonable wear and tear during the period of occupancy, if the landlord finds the account reasonably necessary to ensure the availability of funds for the restoration work. The interest earned in connection with an escrow account described in this division shall accrue to the benefit of the disabled tenant who makes payments into the account.
(b) A landlord shall not condition permission for a proposed modification upon a disabled tenant's payment of a security deposit that exceeds the customarily required security deposit of all tenants of the particular housing accommodations.
(19) Refuse to make reasonable accommodations in rules, policies, practices, or services when necessary to afford a person with a disability equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling unit, including associated public and common use areas;
(20) Fail to comply with the standards and rules adopted under division (A) of section 3781.111 of the Revised Code;
(21) Discriminate against any person in the selling, brokering, or appraising of real property because of race, color, religion, sex, military status, familial status, ancestry, disability, or national origin;
(22) Fail to design and construct covered multifamily dwellings for first occupancy on or after June 30, 1992, in accordance with the following conditions:
(a) The dwellings shall have at least one building entrance on an accessible route, unless it is impractical to do so because of the terrain or unusual characteristics of the site.
(b) With respect to dwellings that have a building entrance on an accessible route, all of the following apply:
(i) The public use areas and common use areas of the dwellings shall be readily accessible to and usable by persons with a disability.
(ii) All the doors designed to allow passage into and within all premises shall be sufficiently wide to allow passage by persons with a disability who are in wheelchairs.
(iii) All premises within covered multifamily dwelling units shall contain an accessible route into and through the dwelling; all light switches, electrical outlets, thermostats, and other environmental controls within such units shall be in accessible locations; the bathroom walls within such units shall contain reinforcements to allow later installation of grab bars; and the kitchens and bathrooms within such units shall be designed and constructed in a manner that enables an individual in a wheelchair to maneuver about such rooms.
For purposes of division (H)(22) of this section, "covered multifamily dwellings" means buildings consisting of four or more units if such buildings have one or more elevators and ground floor units in other buildings consisting of four or more units.
(I) For any person to discriminate in any manner against any other person because that person has opposed any unlawful discriminatory practice defined in this section or because that person has made a charge, testified, assisted, or participated in any manner in any investigation, proceeding, or hearing under sections 4112.01 to 4112.07 of the Revised Code.
(J) For any person to aid, abet, incite, compel, or coerce the doing of any act declared by this section to be an unlawful discriminatory practice, to obstruct or prevent any person from complying with this chapter or any order issued under it, or to attempt directly or indirectly to commit any act declared by this section to be an unlawful discriminatory practice.
(K) For an employer to use a person's credit rating or score or consumer credit history as a factor in making decisions regarding that person's employment, including hiring, tenure, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, or any matter directly or indirectly related to employment.
(L)(1) Nothing in division (H) of this section shall bar any religious or denominational institution or organization, or any nonprofit charitable or educational organization that is operated, supervised, or controlled by or in connection with a religious organization, from limiting the sale, rental, or occupancy of housing accommodations that it owns or operates for other than a commercial purpose to persons of the same religion, or from giving preference in the sale, rental, or occupancy of such housing accommodations to persons of the same religion, unless membership in the religion is restricted on account of race, color, or national origin.
(2) Nothing in division (H) of this section shall bar any bona fide private or fraternal organization that, incidental to its primary purpose, owns or operates lodgings for other than a commercial purpose, from limiting the rental or occupancy of the lodgings to its members or from giving preference to its members.
(3) Nothing in division (H) of this section limits the applicability of any reasonable local, state, or federal restrictions regarding the maximum number of occupants permitted to occupy housing accommodations. Nothing in that division prohibits the owners or managers of housing accommodations from implementing reasonable occupancy standards based on the number and size of sleeping areas or bedrooms and the overall size of a dwelling unit, provided that the standards are not implemented to circumvent the purposes of this chapter and are formulated, implemented, and interpreted in a manner consistent with this chapter and any applicable local, state, or federal restrictions regarding the maximum number of occupants permitted to occupy housing accommodations.
(4) Nothing in division (H) of this section requires that housing accommodations be made available to an individual whose tenancy would constitute a direct threat to the health or safety of other individuals or whose tenancy would result in substantial physical damage to the property of others.
(5) Nothing in division (H) of this section pertaining to discrimination on the basis of familial status shall be construed to apply to any of the following:
(a) Housing accommodations provided under any state or federal program that have been determined under the "Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988," 102 Stat. 1623, 42 U.S.C.A. 3607, as amended, to be specifically designed and operated to assist elderly persons;
(b) Housing accommodations intended for and solely occupied by persons who are sixty-two years of age or older;
(c) Housing accommodations intended and operated for occupancy by at least one person who is fifty-five years of age or older per unit, as determined under the "Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988," 102 Stat. 1623, 42 U.S.C.A. 3607, as amended.
(L)(M) Nothing in divisions (A) to (E) of this section shall be construed to require a person with a disability to be employed or trained under circumstances that would significantly increase the occupational hazards affecting either the person with a disability, other employees, the general public, or the facilities in which the work is to be performed, or to require the employment or training of a person with a disability in a job that requires the person with a disability routinely to undertake any task, the performance of which is substantially and inherently impaired by the person's disability.
(M)(N) Nothing in divisions (H)(1) to (18) of this section shall be construed to require any person selling or renting property to modify the property in any way or to exercise a higher degree of care for a person with a disability, to relieve any person with a disability of any obligation generally imposed on all persons regardless of disability in a written lease, rental agreement, or contract of purchase or sale, or to forbid distinctions based on the inability to fulfill the terms and conditions, including financial obligations, of the lease, agreement, or contract.
(N)(O) An aggrieved individual may enforce the individual's rights relative to discrimination on the basis of age as provided for in this section by instituting a civil action, within one hundred eighty days after the alleged unlawful discriminatory practice occurred, in any court with jurisdiction for any legal or equitable relief that will effectuate the individual's rights.
A person who files a civil action under this division is barred, with respect to the practices complained of, from instituting a civil action under section 4112.14 of the Revised Code and from filing a charge with the commission under section 4112.05 of the Revised Code.
(O)(P) With regard to age, it shall not be an unlawful discriminatory practice and it shall not constitute a violation of division (A) of section 4112.14 of the Revised Code for any employer, employment agency, joint labor-management committee controlling apprenticeship training programs, or labor organization to do any of the following:
(1) Establish bona fide employment qualifications reasonably related to the particular business or occupation that may include standards for skill, aptitude, physical capability, intelligence, education, maturation, and experience;
(2) Observe the terms of a bona fide seniority system or any bona fide employee benefit plan, including, but not limited to, a retirement, pension, or insurance plan, that is not a subterfuge to evade the purposes of this section. However, no such employee benefit plan shall excuse the failure to hire any individual, and no such seniority system or employee benefit plan shall require or permit the involuntary retirement of any individual, because of the individual's age except as provided for in the "Age Discrimination in Employment Act Amendment of 1978," 92 Stat. 189, 29 U.S.C.A. 623, as amended by the "Age Discrimination in Employment Act Amendments of 1986," 100 Stat. 3342, 29 U.S.C.A. 623, as amended.
(3) Retire an employee who has attained sixty-five years of age who, for the two-year period immediately before retirement, is employed in a bona fide executive or a high policymaking position, if the employee is entitled to an immediate nonforfeitable annual retirement benefit from a pension, profit-sharing, savings, or deferred compensation plan, or any combination of those plans, of the employer of the employee, which equals, in the aggregate, at least forty-four thousand dollars, in accordance with the conditions of the "Age Discrimination in Employment Act Amendment of 1978," 92 Stat. 189, 29 U.S.C.A. 631, as amended by the "Age Discrimination in Employment Act Amendments of 1986," 100 Stat. 3342, 29 U.S.C.A. 631, as amended;
(4) Observe the terms of any bona fide apprenticeship program if the program is registered with the Ohio apprenticeship council pursuant to sections 4139.01 to 4139.06 of the Revised Code and is approved by the federal committee on apprenticeship of the United States department of labor.
(P)(Q) Nothing in this chapter prohibiting age discrimination and nothing in division (A) of section 4112.14 of the Revised Code shall be construed to prohibit the following:
(1) The designation of uniform age the attainment of which is necessary for public employees to receive pension or other retirement benefits pursuant to Chapter 145., 742., 3307., 3309., or 5505. of the Revised Code;
(2) The mandatory retirement of uniformed patrol officers of the state highway patrol as provided in section 5505.16 of the Revised Code;
(3) The maximum age requirements for appointment as a patrol officer in the state highway patrol established by section 5503.01 of the Revised Code;
(4) The maximum age requirements established for original appointment to a police department or fire department in sections 124.41 and 124.42 of the Revised Code;
(5) Any maximum age not in conflict with federal law that may be established by a municipal charter, municipal ordinance, or resolution of a board of township trustees for original appointment as a police officer or firefighter;
(6) Any mandatory retirement provision not in conflict with federal law of a municipal charter, municipal ordinance, or resolution of a board of township trustees pertaining to police officers and firefighters;
(7) Until January 1, 1994, the mandatory retirement of any employee who has attained seventy years of age and who is serving under a contract of unlimited tenure, or similar arrangement providing for unlimited tenure, at an institution of higher education as defined in the "Education Amendments of 1980," 94 Stat. 1503, 20 U.S.C.A. 1141(a).
(Q)(R)(1)(a) Except as provided in division (Q)(R)(1)(b) of this section, for purposes of divisions (A) to (E) of this section, a disability does not include any physiological disorder or condition, mental or psychological disorder, or disease or condition caused by an illegal use of any controlled substance by an employee, applicant, or other person, if an employer, employment agency, personnel placement service, labor organization, or joint labor-management committee acts on the basis of that illegal use.
(b) Division (Q)(R)(1)(a) of this section does not apply to an employee, applicant, or other person who satisfies any of the following:
(i) The employee, applicant, or other person has successfully completed a supervised drug rehabilitation program and no longer is engaging in the illegal use of any controlled substance, or the employee, applicant, or other person otherwise successfully has been rehabilitated and no longer is engaging in that illegal use.
(ii) The employee, applicant, or other person is participating in a supervised drug rehabilitation program and no longer is engaging in the illegal use of any controlled substance.
(iii) The employee, applicant, or other person is erroneously regarded as engaging in the illegal use of any controlled substance, but the employee, applicant, or other person is not engaging in that illegal use.
(2) Divisions (A) to (E) of this section do not prohibit an employer, employment agency, personnel placement service, labor organization, or joint labor-management committee from doing any of the following:
(a) Adopting or administering reasonable policies or procedures, including, but not limited to, testing for the illegal use of any controlled substance, that are designed to ensure that an individual described in division (Q)(R)(1)(b)(i) or (ii) of this section no longer is engaging in the illegal use of any controlled substance;
(b) Prohibiting the illegal use of controlled substances and the use of alcohol at the workplace by all employees;
(c) Requiring that employees not be under the influence of alcohol or not be engaged in the illegal use of any controlled substance at the workplace;
(d) Requiring that employees behave in conformance with the requirements established under "The Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988," 102 Stat. 4304, 41 U.S.C.A. 701, as amended;
(e) Holding an employee who engages in the illegal use of any controlled substance or who is an alcoholic to the same qualification standards for employment or job performance, and the same behavior, to which the employer, employment agency, personnel placement service, labor organization, or joint labor-management committee holds other employees, even if any unsatisfactory performance or behavior is related to an employee's illegal use of a controlled substance or alcoholism;
(f) Exercising other authority recognized in the "Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990," 104 Stat. 327, 42 U.S.C.A. 12101, as amended, including, but not limited to, requiring employees to comply with any applicable federal standards.
(3) For purposes of this chapter, a test to determine the illegal use of any controlled substance does not include a medical examination.
(4) Division (Q)(R) of this section does not encourage, prohibit, or authorize, and shall not be construed as encouraging, prohibiting, or authorizing, the conduct of testing for the illegal use of any controlled substance by employees, applicants, or other persons, or the making of employment decisions based on the results of that type of testing.
Sec. 4112.05.  (A) The commission, as provided in this section, shall prevent any person from engaging in unlawful discriminatory practices, provided that, before instituting the formal hearing authorized by division (B) of this section, it shall attempt, by informal methods of conference, conciliation, and persuasion, to induce compliance with this chapter.
(B)(1) Any person may file a charge with the commission alleging that another person has engaged or is engaging in an unlawful discriminatory practice. In the case of a charge alleging an unlawful discriminatory practice described in division (A), (B), (C), (D), (E), (F), (G), (I), or (J), or (K) of section 4112.02 or in section 4112.021 or 4112.022 of the Revised Code, the charge shall be in writing and under oath and shall be filed with the commission within six months after the alleged unlawful discriminatory practice was committed. In the case of a charge alleging an unlawful discriminatory practice described in division (H) of section 4112.02 of the Revised Code, the charge shall be in writing and under oath and shall be filed with the commission within one year after the alleged unlawful discriminatory practice was committed.
(2) Upon receiving a charge, the commission may initiate a preliminary investigation to determine whether it is probable that an unlawful discriminatory practice has been or is being engaged in. The commission also may conduct, upon its own initiative and independent of the filing of any charges, a preliminary investigation relating to any of the unlawful discriminatory practices described in division (A), (B), (C), (D), (E), (F), (I), or (J), or (K) of section 4112.02 or in section 4112.021 or 4112.022 of the Revised Code. Prior to a notification of a complainant under division (B)(4) of this section or prior to the commencement of informal methods of conference, conciliation, and persuasion under that division, the members of the commission and the officers and employees of the commission shall not make public in any manner and shall retain as confidential all information that was obtained as a result of or that otherwise pertains to a preliminary investigation other than one described in division (B)(3) of this section.
(3)(a) Unless it is impracticable to do so and subject to its authority under division (B)(3)(d) of this section, the commission shall complete a preliminary investigation of a charge filed pursuant to division (B)(1) of this section that alleges an unlawful discriminatory practice described in division (H) of section 4112.02 of the Revised Code, and shall take one of the following actions, within one hundred days after the filing of the charge:
(i) Notify the complainant and the respondent that it is not probable that an unlawful discriminatory practice described in division (H) of section 4112.02 of the Revised Code has been or is being engaged in and that the commission will not issue a complaint in the matter;
(ii) Initiate a complaint and schedule it for informal methods of conference, conciliation, and persuasion;
(iii) Initiate a complaint and refer it to the attorney general with a recommendation to seek a temporary or permanent injunction or a temporary restraining order. If this action is taken, the attorney general shall apply, as expeditiously as possible after receipt of the complaint, to the court of common pleas of the county in which the unlawful discriminatory practice allegedly occurred for the appropriate injunction or order, and the court shall hear and determine the application as expeditiously as possible.
(b) If it is not practicable to comply with the requirements of division (B)(3)(a) of this section within the one-hundred-day period described in that division, the commission shall notify the complainant and the respondent in writing of the reasons for the noncompliance.
(c) Prior to the issuance of a complaint under division (B)(3)(a)(ii) or (iii) of this section or prior to a notification of the complainant and the respondent under division (B)(3)(a)(i) of this section, the members of the commission and the officers and employees of the commission shall not make public in any manner and shall retain as confidential all information that was obtained as a result of or that otherwise pertains to a preliminary investigation of a charge filed pursuant to division (B)(1) of this section that alleges an unlawful discriminatory practice described in division (H) of section 4112.05 of the Revised Code.
(d) Notwithstanding the types of action described in divisions (B)(3)(a)(ii) and (iii) of this section, prior to the issuance of a complaint or the referral of a complaint to the attorney general and prior to endeavoring to eliminate an unlawful discriminatory practice described in division (H) of section 4112.02 of the Revised Code by informal methods of conference, conciliation, and persuasion, the commission may seek a temporary or permanent injunction or a temporary restraining order in the court of common pleas of the county in which the unlawful discriminatory practice allegedly occurred.
(4) If the commission determines after a preliminary investigation other than one described in division (B)(3) of this section that it is not probable that an unlawful discriminatory practice has been or is being engaged in, it shall notify any complainant under division (B)(1) of this section that it has so determined and that it will not issue a complaint in the matter. If the commission determines after a preliminary investigation other than the one described in division (B)(3) of this section that it is probable that an unlawful discriminatory practice has been or is being engaged in, it shall endeavor to eliminate the practice by informal methods of conference, conciliation, and persuasion.
(5) Nothing said or done during informal methods of conference, conciliation, and persuasion under this section shall be disclosed by any member of the commission or its staff or be used as evidence in any subsequent hearing or other proceeding. If, after a preliminary investigation and the use of informal methods of conference, conciliation, and persuasion under this section, the commission is satisfied that any unlawful discriminatory practice will be eliminated, it may treat the charge involved as being conciliated and enter that disposition on the records of the commission. If the commission fails to effect the elimination of an unlawful discriminatory practice by informal methods of conference, conciliation, and persuasion under this section and to obtain voluntary compliance with this chapter, the commission shall issue and cause to be served upon any person, including the respondent against whom a complainant has filed a charge pursuant to division (B)(1) of this section, a complaint stating the charges involved and containing a notice of an opportunity for a hearing before the commission, a member of the commission, or a hearing examiner at a place that is stated in the notice and that is located within the county in which the alleged unlawful discriminatory practice has occurred or is occurring or in which the respondent resides or transacts business. The hearing shall be held not less than thirty days after the service of the complaint upon the complainant, the aggrieved persons other than the complainant on whose behalf the complaint is issued, and the respondent, unless the complainant, an aggrieved person, or the respondent elects to proceed under division (A)(2) of section 4112.051 of the Revised Code when that division is applicable. If a complaint pertains to an alleged unlawful discriminatory practice described in division (H) of section 4112.02 of the Revised Code, the complaint shall notify the complainant, an aggrieved person, and the respondent of the right of the complainant, an aggrieved person, or the respondent to elect to proceed with the administrative hearing process under this section or to proceed under division (A)(2) of section 4112.051 of the Revised Code.
(6) The attorney general shall represent the commission at any hearing held pursuant to division (B)(5) of this section and shall present the evidence in support of the complaint.
(7) Any complaint issued pursuant to division (B)(5) of this section after the filing of a charge under division (B)(1) of this section shall be so issued within one year after the complainant filed the charge with respect to an alleged unlawful discriminatory practice.
(C) Any complaint issued pursuant to division (B) of this section may be amended by the commission, a member of the commission, or the hearing examiner conducting a hearing under division (B) of this section, at any time prior to or during the hearing. The respondent has the right to file an answer or an amended answer to the original and amended complaints and to appear at the hearing in person, by attorney, or otherwise to examine and cross-examine witnesses.
(D) The complainant shall be a party to a hearing under division (B) of this section, and any person who is an indispensable party to a complete determination or settlement of a question involved in the hearing shall be joined. Any aggrieved person who has or claims an interest in the subject of the hearing and in obtaining or preventing relief against the unlawful discriminatory practices complained of shall be permitted to appear only for the presentation of oral or written arguments, to present evidence, perform direct and cross-examination, and be represented by counsel. The commission shall adopt rules, in accordance with Chapter 119. of the Revised Code governing the authority granted under this division.
(E) In any hearing under division (B) of this section, the commission, a member of the commission, or the hearing examiner shall not be bound by the Rules of Evidence but, in ascertaining the practices followed by the respondent, shall take into account all reliable, probative, and substantial statistical or other evidence produced at the hearing that may tend to prove the existence of a predetermined pattern of employment or membership, provided that nothing contained in this section shall be construed to authorize or require any person to observe the proportion that persons of any race, color, religion, sex, military status, familial status, national origin, disability, age, or ancestry bear to the total population or in accordance with any criterion other than the individual qualifications of the applicant.
(F) The testimony taken at a hearing under division (B) of this section shall be under oath and shall be reduced to writing and filed with the commission. Thereafter, in its discretion, the commission, upon the service of a notice upon the complainant and the respondent that indicates an opportunity to be present, may take further testimony or hear argument.
(G)(1) If, upon all reliable, probative, and substantial evidence presented at a hearing under division (B) of this section, the commission determines that the respondent has engaged in, or is engaging in, any unlawful discriminatory practice, whether against the complainant or others, the commission shall state its findings of fact and conclusions of law and shall issue and, subject to the provisions of Chapter 119. of the Revised Code, cause to be served on the respondent an order requiring the respondent to cease and desist from the unlawful discriminatory practice, requiring the respondent to take any further affirmative or other action that will effectuate the purposes of this chapter, including, but not limited to, hiring, reinstatement, or upgrading of employees with or without back pay, or admission or restoration to union membership, and requiring the respondent to report to the commission the manner of compliance. If the commission directs payment of back pay, it shall make allowance for interim earnings. If it finds a violation of division (H) of section 4112.02 of the Revised Code, the commission additionally shall require the respondent to pay actual damages and reasonable attorney's fees, and may award to the complainant punitive damages as follows:
(a) If division (G)(1)(b) or (c) of this section does not apply, punitive damages in an amount not to exceed ten thousand dollars;
(b) If division (G)(1)(c) of this section does not apply and if the respondent has been determined by a final order of the commission or by a final judgment of a court to have committed one violation of division (H) of section 4112.02 of the Revised Code during the five-year period immediately preceding the date on which a complaint was issued pursuant to division (B) of this section, punitive damages in an amount not to exceed twenty-five thousand dollars;
(c) If the respondent has been determined by a final order of the commission or by a final judgment of a court to have committed two or more violations of division (H) of section 4112.02 of the Revised Code during the seven-year period immediately preceding the date on which a complaint was issued pursuant to division (B) of this section, punitive damages in an amount not to exceed fifty thousand dollars.
(2) Upon the submission of reports of compliance, the commission may issue a declaratory order stating that the respondent has ceased to engage in particular unlawful discriminatory practices.
(H) If the commission finds that no probable cause exists for crediting charges of unlawful discriminatory practices or if, upon all the evidence presented at a hearing under division (B) of this section on a charge, the commission finds that a respondent has not engaged in any unlawful discriminatory practice against the complainant or others, it shall state its findings of fact and shall issue and cause to be served on the complainant an order dismissing the complaint as to the respondent. A copy of the order shall be delivered in all cases to the attorney general and any other public officers whom the commission considers proper.
(I) Until the time period for appeal set forth in division (H) of section 4112.06 of the Revised Code expires, the commission, subject to the provisions of Chapter 119. of the Revised Code, at any time, upon reasonable notice, and in the manner it considers proper, may modify or set aside, in whole or in part, any finding or order made by it under this section.
Sec. 4112.08.  This chapter shall be construed liberally for the accomplishment of its purposes, and any law inconsistent with any provision of this chapter shall not apply. Nothing contained in this chapter shall be considered to repeal any of the provisions of any law of this state relating to discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, military status, familial status, disability, national origin, age, or ancestry, except that any person filing a charge under division (B)(1) of section 4112.05 of the Revised Code, with respect to the unlawful discriminatory practices complained of, is barred from instituting a civil action under section 4112.14 or division (N)(O) of section 4112.02 of the Revised Code.
Sec. 4112.14.  (A) No employer shall discriminate in any job opening against any applicant or discharge without just cause any employee aged forty or older who is physically able to perform the duties and otherwise meets the established requirements of the job and laws pertaining to the relationship between employer and employee.
(B) Any person aged forty or older who is discriminated against in any job opening or discharged without just cause by an employer in violation of division (A) of this section may institute a civil action against the employer in a court of competent jurisdiction. If the court finds that an employer has discriminated on the basis of age, the court shall order an appropriate remedy which shall include reimbursement to the applicant or employee for the costs, including reasonable attorney's fees, of the action, or to reinstate the employee in the employee's former position with compensation for lost wages and any lost fringe benefits from the date of the illegal discharge and to reimburse the employee for the costs, including reasonable attorney's fees, of the action. The remedies available under this section are coexistent with remedies available pursuant to sections 4112.01 to 4112.11 of the Revised Code; except that any person instituting a civil action under this section is, with respect to the practices complained of, thereby barred from instituting a civil action under division (N)(O) of section 4112.02 of the Revised Code or from filing a charge with the Ohio civil rights commission under section 4112.05 of the Revised Code.
(C) The cause of action described in division (B) of this section and any remedies available pursuant to sections 4112.01 to 4112.11 of the Revised Code shall not be available in the case of discharges where the employee has available to the employee the opportunity to arbitrate the discharge or where a discharge has been arbitrated and has been found to be for just cause.
Section 2. That existing sections 4112.02, 4112.05, 4112.08, and 4112.14 of the Revised Code are hereby repealed.
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