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Minnesota Department of Human Rights MDHR Complaint Handling Process


MDHR determines if complaint is covered by the Minnesota Human Rights Act.
NOTE: Time Limit for Filing. The time limit for filing a charge with our agency is one year* from the date of the incident.

  • If complaint is not covered, there is no filing
  • If complaint is covered: charge is filed and sent to the respondent.
    • MEDIATION (optional): if mediation fails, case goes to investigation. If mediation is successful, case is closed.


MDHR conducts a neutral fact finding investigation


MDHR issues determination on the charge(s): Probable Cause or No Probable Cause (appeal is optional**)

  • No Probable Cause: case closed
  • Probable Cause: case goes to conciliation


MDHR attempts to get parties to settle dispute.

  • Conciliation fails:
    • Case closed. Charging party may pursue private legal action; or
    • Attorney General's Office argues case in court

NOTE: Charging party may decide to pursue their charge in district court at any time during this process by withdrawing their charge(s); MDHR will close the case at this time.

NOTE: Representation is not required, however, either party may choose to have their attorney present at any proceedings before the department.

* Time limit: Tolling for the one year time limit is suspended during alternative dispute resolution.

** Appeals: Either party may appeal determination, if appeal is successful the case returns to investigation, otherwise the case determination is unchanged.

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