Sexual Harassment

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Employment-Law

Los Angeles Sexual Harassment Attorney

Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

In California, workers are protected from workplace sexual harassment under both federal and state employment laws. Although many people think of sexual harassment in its most obvious forms, such as groping or sexual assault—it is often far more subtle and insidious.

Continue reading to learn more about sexual harassment in the workplace and your rights, or you can reach out to KJT Law Group directly to speak to an attorney at our firm. If you believe your employer or another party has violated your rights, our team is here to provide the support and representation you need. We are passionate advocates for the wronged and are ready to fight to hold the responsible parties accountable. Our attorneys understand the sensitive and often-challenging nature of these cases—and we know how to go up against large corporations and other entities in our pursuit of justice.

To schedule a free, confidential consultation with one of our Los Angeles sexual harassment attorneys, please call (818) 507-8525 or by
contact us online.

What Is Considered Sexual Harassment in the Workplace?

Sexual harassment takes many forms, but in the broadest of terms, any unwanted and/or unwelcome sexual comments, advances, or conduct in the workplace constitutes sexual harassment. While it can be sexual in nature, this type of harassment can also be based on one’s actual or perceived gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, or transgender status.

There are two main types of workplace sexual harassment:

  • Quid Pro Quo: With quid pro quo sexual harassment, the terms of the individual’s employment are conditional on the individual accepting unwanted sexual comments, advances, and other related conduct. Typically, quid pro quo sexual harassment involves a superior or another party who has some control over an employee’s job, work-related duties, pay, opportunities, career advancement, or other benefits.
  • Hostile Work Environment: Hostile work environment sexual harassment occurs when inappropriate and unwelcome sexual conduct or overtures within the workplace cause an employee to feel significant stress and/or discomfort. To be considered a “hostile work environment,” the conduct must generally be consistent, repeated, frequent, and/or ongoing; isolated incidents typically do not qualify as creating a hostile work environment.

In both cases, sexual harassment can be obvious and direct. But far more often, it is more subtle and difficult to detect. A boss may not directly state that an employee’s promotion is tied to whether or not they agree to sexual favors but instead may imply that, if the employee responds negatively to unwelcome sexual advances, they will be unable to advance within the company. An employer may foster a hostile work environment by laughing off an employee’s complaint about a co-worker’s frequent sexual jokes or behavior.

Though they are less obvious than outright sexual assault, these and other examples of subtle sexual harassment are still wrong and unlawful.

Sexual Harassment FAQ

Is sexual harassment only men harassing women?

Absolutely not. Any individual who identifies as any sex or gender can be either a victim or a perpetrator of sexual harassment. Sexual harassment is about one person trying to exert their power over another regardless of gender and other characteristics.

I had an intimate relationship with a co-worker but broke it off. If that co-worker harasses me, can I still bring a claim for sexual harassment?

Yes, you can. Sexual harassment claims are based on unwanted, non-consensual sexual remarks and other such behaviors. If you feel as though you are being harassed, contact a local sexual harassment lawyer as soon as possible to learn more about your legal rights. No one deserves to be harassed regardless of their past or current relationship with the harasser.

If a co-worker or supervisor comments on my clothing or appearance, is that sexual harassment?

It may be. For example, if your supervisor scolds you for not dressing according to your position’s dress or safety codes, this is likely not sexual harassment. If, however, you have a colleague or supervisor who has commented on your attire or appearance, especially when they would have no reason to, it might be sexual harassment. An attorney can help you determine whether you have grounds for a sexual harassment case during a free consultation.

Call (818) 507-8525 or submit a secure online contact form to get started.

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Proving Workplace Sexual Harassment

It can be very challenging to prove that you were the victim of workplace sexual harassment. Not only are these cases emotionally fraught, but they are also highly legally complex. Our Los Angeles sexual harassment attorneys at KJT Law Group can help you understand your legal rights and assist in gathering all available evidence to support your claim.

To prove quid pro quo sexual harassment, you must establish the following:

  • You were subjected to unwelcome comments, demands, or advances
  • The comments, demands, or advances were sexual in nature
  • The conduct was perpetuated by someone of authority, such as a supervisor
  • It was explicitly or implicitly indicated you would face adverse actions if you did not comply
  • The interaction resulted in tangible adverse employment-related actions

In other words, you only have a case if someone in a position of authority made unwelcome sexual remarks, advances, or demands with the explicit or implicit understanding that you would face employment-related consequences, such as being fired or passed over for a promotion, if you did not comply, and you actually suffered those consequences.

To prove hostile work environment sexual harassment, you will most likely need to demonstrate:

  • Workplace conduct (such as comments, remarks, jokes, or posted images/signs) discriminated against a protected group, such as women or LGBTQ+ individuals
  • The conduct was sexual in nature or hostile against a group protected by gender discrimination or sexual harassment laws

  • The conduct was severe, consistent, and pervasive, meaning it occurred frequently and/or repeatedly over time

  • The nature of the conduct created an environment that was severe enough to significantly impact your employment

Generally, you have a claim if your employer fails to properly investigate the alleged conduct after it is brought to their attention.

Our team at KJT Law Group can assist you in determining if you have a case. We only accept cases we genuinely believe we can win; should you choose us to represent your case, you can rely on us to be your compassionate counselor and aggressive advocate throughout the legal process.

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