The procedural background of this action is not in dispute. On July 26, 1993, Plaintiff sent correspondence to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"), indicating that she sought to lodge a formal complaint against BOMC and requesting that her charge be filed with the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission. She submitted no further documentation to the EEOC and no action was taken by the EEOC until September 29, 1995, when it issued a right to sue letter.
II. LAW AND ANALYSIS
Prior to commencing an action under Title VII, a plaintiff must first file a charge with the EEOC alleging that the employer engaged in a discriminatory employment practice. The charge "shall be in writing under oath or affirmation and shall contain such information and be in such form as the Commission requires." 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-5(b). The EEOC then conducts an investigation of the charge to determine whether there is "reasonable cause to believe that the charge is true. . . ." Id. If it finds reasonable cause, it must "endeavor to eliminate any such alleged unlawful employment practice by informal methods of conference, conciliation, and persuasion." Id. If, however, it finds that no such reasonable cause exists, or more than 180 days elapse from the filing of the charge, it must dismiss the charge and issue a right to sue letter. Id. The plaintiff then has 90 days to file a lawsuit against his or her employer. 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-5(f)(1).
Here, Plaintiff filed an unverified charge with the EEOC on July 26, 1993. On September 29, 1995, the EEOC issued a right to sue letter and plaintiff commenced this action. BOMC contends that Plaintiff's failure to verify her charge prior to the EEOC's issuance of the right to sue letter mandates dismissal of her claim. Plaintiff argues that the only requirements for maintaining a Title VII claim are: (1) the filing of a charge; and (2) the issuance of a right to sue letter, and that verification is a procedural requirement for the EEOC rather than a prerequisite to a subsequent civil action. She avers that she filed a "charge", notwithstanding her failure to verify it, and is therefore entitled to prosecute a Title VII action.
In support of her contention that verification is a procedural requirement, Plaintiff relies upon 29 C.F.R. § 1601.12(b), which provides that
a charge is sufficient when the Commission receives from the person making the charge a written statement sufficiently precise to identify the parties, and to describe generally the action or practices complained of. A charge may be amended to cure technical defects or omissions, including failure to verify the charge, or to clarify and amplify allegations made therein.