Los Angeles Sexual Harassment Lawyer
Call (310) 986-2792 for a No-Cost, Confidential Consultation
If you face
sexual harassment in the workplace, then you need to be aware of your full legal rights and how you can assert
them. You might have the legal backing to file a sexual harassment lawsuit.
At Alan Burton Newman, PLC, you can join forces with an attorney who is
more than four decades of legal excellence and proven results. He has recovered millions of dollars for clients on a
contingency fee basis, which means that you don’t pay any legal fees unless Mr. Newman
recovers compensation for you. Don’t hesitate to discover how this
Los Angeles sexual harassment lawyer can help you pursue justice.
Call Mr. Newman or use a
convenient online form to request your free consultation.
What Is Sexual Harassment?
Sexual harassment may take two forms: hostile environment or "quid pro quo."
What Constitutes a Sexually Hostile Environment?
A hostile environment is created when the behavior is
sexual, severe, and pervasive. Sexual means that the conduct is based upon sex. It does not require
that the harasser seeks sexual favors, but only requires that the conduct
is sexual in nature. Severe means the conduct is more than just bad manners.
For example, a rape is severe whereas complimenting someone on the way
they look may be just bad manners. However, even bad manners when repeated
enough, may rise to the level of sexual harassment. The more severe the
conduct, the less repetitive it has to be. The less severe the conduct,
the more repetitive it must be.
What Is Quid Pro Quo?
Quid pro quo in English means "this for that." This is when the
harasser asks for sexual favors in return for some benefit to the victim.
Unlike hostile environment, a single instance is sufficient to be legally
considered as sexual harassment.
What Are the Damages for Sexual Harassment?
The damages for sexual harassment may include loss of income, emotional
distress, medical expenses, punitive damages, and attorney’s fees.
The more severe the conduct, the greater the amount of the
For example, Mr. Newman
won a verdict for quid pro quo sexual harassment in the amount of $1.125 million for an African-American woman with a felony. This is one of the largest
verdicts for a single victim of sexual harassment in California. There
have been larger jury verdicts, however, most of them have been overturned
by the judge or by the appellate court as excessive. In this case, the
boss threatened to tell the employer of the employee's felony conviction
unless she would have sex with him. The large verdict was due in part
to the employer's human resources policy that even in the case of
a rape, the appropriate action would be for the harasser and the victim
to sit together in the same room and work it out.
Who Is Liable for Sexual harassment in the Workplace?
The harasser is obviously liable, or responsible, for their actions. The
company will be liable if the harasser acts as a supervisor, or if the
company was aware of the harassment but did not protect the employee,
and failed to appropriately discipline the harasser. If the employer retaliates
against the employee for reporting the conduct, then the employer will
be liable for damages, even if the conduct was not sufficient to qualify
as sexual harassment under the statute.
The company will also be liable for the conduct of its independent contractors,
such as vendors like the security guard service hired to protect the employees.
If the employer becomes aware of the independent contractor's conduct
and does nothing to prevent it from continuing, the employer will become liable.
What Is the Difference Between Title VI & FEHA?
Both are laws against sexual harassment in workers' place of employment.
Title VI is the federal law. FEHA (Fair Employment and Housing Act) is
the California state law. The main difference is that the federal law
limits the amount of damages a victim can obtain, whereas the California
law does not have these limitations.
Who Is Liable for Sexual Harassment Outside the Workplace?
Under California Civil Code 91.5, people in a position of trust are
liable for sexual harassment, similar to employer/employee relationships under FEHA. These include
teachers, doctors, dentists, lawyers, and their employees, as well as
schools, hospitals, and law offices.
Under Title IX and California Educational Code §220, the school and
university is liable for the sexual harassment of its teachers, professors,
coaches and administrators.
Call our Los Angeles sexual harassment attorney or complete an online