Employers of all makes and sizes are susceptible to claims brought by their employees. Some of those claims can be for sexual harassment caused by another employee or superior. In some instances, the employer is notified after the first incident. This means that the employer has time to properly react to the situation and hopefully avoid a future sexual harassment claim. In other instances, the employer has no idea what is going on until it is too late and the employee has filed a lawsuit for sexual harassment.
Types of Sexual Harassment Claims:
There are two types of sexual harassment claims an employee may bring against the employer:
- Hostile work environment: this occurs when the employee is made to feel uncomfortable by another employee or superior through verbal, written or physical conduct of a sexual nature. The employee must demonstrate that (1) the conduct was unwelcome, (2) it occurred because of his/her sex, and (3) a reasonable person of the same sex would consider it sufficiently severe or pervasive to alter the condition of employment and create an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment.
- Quid pro quo: this occurs when an employee’s superior demands sexual favors from the employee in return for granting or withholding job benefits or continued employment. The employee must establish that (1) he/she is a member of a protected class, (2) he/she was subjected to unwanted sexual harassment to which members of the opposite sex were not, (3) harassment complained of was based on sex, and (4) employee’s reaction to the harassment complained of affected tangible aspects of his/her compensation, terms, conditions or privileges of employment. Acceptance or rejection of the harassment by the employee must be an expressed or implied condition to the receipt of a job benefit or the cause of a tangible job detriment.
What We Do For You:
At The Rubinstein Law Firm, LLC, we recommend that our clients sit down with us and review their current policies on workplace conduct and, internal procedures on what to do when employees notify the employer of a potential problem. This way, a procedure is already in place and there is no delay once the employer is notified of an issue. However, we recognize that some employers may not have procedures in place on how to deal with a potential claim. This is why we recommend that our clients contact us as soon as they know that something may not be right. This way, we can assist them in planning their investigation course and following proper procedures to hopefully avoid future litigation. For clients who already have a lawsuit filed against them, we sit down with them and plan a proper defense strategy to avoid a lengthy and costly litigation process.
The Rubinstein Law Firm, LLC offers free initial consultations where you can discuss your business and/or concerns with an experienced attorney at no cost. Call The Rubinstein Law Firm, LLC at (609) 392-7600 for a FREE consultation.
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