Tesla Inc countersued the California agency on Thursday. It is the same agency that has accused the carmaker of tolerating race discrimination at its flagship assembly plant.
The automaker in a complaint filed in state court in Alameda County said the California Civil Rights Department (CRD), which took legal action against the automaker in February, adopted “underground regulations” allowing it to file the lawsuit without first notifying the automaker of the claims or giving it a chance to settle.
Tesla’s counter-lawsuit accuses CRD of violating state law by not seeking public comment before embracing procedures for investigating and suing employers.
And those procedures flout requirements that the CRD reveals details of its investigations to employers and make attempts to settle claims outside of court before taking legal action, Tesla claims.
Tesla is seeking an order prohibiting the CRD from following its allegedly illegal procedures in the investigation of any employer and needing the agency to adopt new regulations through a formal rulemaking process.
The CRD claims Tesla’s flagship Fremont, California, plant is racially segregated where Black employees faced racist slurs and graffiti and have been discriminated against in terms of job assignments, discipline, and pay.
Tesla has rejected wrongdoing and termed the lawsuit as politically motivated.