Sexual Harassment Lawyers
Sexual harassment is unwanted sexual advances, sexual conduct or other verbal or physical action of a sexual nature, usually at the workplace.
Conduct that is Considered Sexual Harassment
- Direct sexual conduct by employer - An employer is not permitted to make sexual remarks or sexual advances.
- Quid pro quo - An employer is also prohibited from negotiating the terms of employment in exchange for sexual conduct.
- Hostile work environment - An employer may be responsible for harassment if co-workers or supervisors maintain a work environment that is overly sexual. An employer is required to keep the employment environment free from sexual harassment. An employer may be held liable when a supervisor or co-worker is the harasser.
- Stereotypes - An employer, co-worker or supervisor also cannot harass you because you do not conform to the typical male or female stereotype.
Who is Protected under Sexual Harassment Laws?
- Female employees harassed by male employers, supervisors or co-workers
- Male employees harassed by female employers, supervisors or co-workers
- Male or female employees harassed by employers, supervisors or co-workers of their own sex in certain situations - this "same-sex" sexual harassment usually is a result of the harasser's belief that the individual does not conform to a sexual stereotype
Sexual Harassment Policies
Employers are usually required to post policies regarding sexual harassment in the workplace. These policies should address:
- To whom an employee report sexual harassment
- The procedures for the employer's investigation of sexual harassment claims
- Corrective measures where the sexual harassment claim is confirmed
Protection against Sexual Harassment -State and Federal Laws
Both federal and state laws prohibit harassment in employment on the basis of sex or gender. Both the federal government and states have created agencies that investigate harassment claims and enforce the laws prohibiting sexual harassment.
- Federal laws - Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) enforces the Federal sex discrimination and harassment laws. They investigate claims of discrimination and harassment in employment. Generally, in order to file a lawsuit in federal court, an employee must first file a claim with the EEOC with 180 days of the conduct.
- State laws -Many states also have their own laws to regulate sexual harassment in employment and agencies to enforce these laws. State deadlines for filing claims vary.
- Retaliation - Employers are prohibited from taking a negative employment action against an employee because he or she reports sexual harassment or participates in a sexual harassment investigation. Such negative employment actions include demotions, decrease in pay, firing or restricting benefits.
Do I Need a Sexual Harassment Attorney?
Both investigating and proving a sexual harassment claim can be difficult. A lawyer can help you file within the deadlines for sexual harassment claims appropriate to your state. Additionally, the EEOC investigators are often overworked and cannot investigate your claim immediately. A lawyer will help you investigate your claim and inform you of the various options you can pursue.
Consult a Lawyer - Present Your Case Now!
Last Modified: 10-14-2011 10:53 AM PDT