Most victims’ claims of sexual harassment have merit; however, many victims have exaggerated their claims or even made up claims because they are angry that they have been terminated or they wish to obtain financial gain. Even the most experienced attorneys have been fooled by their clients.
Because this type of conduct generally goes on behind closed doors, there may not be any witnesses or other corroborating evidence. Yet if the allegations are true, the victim absolutely should be vindicated and compensated.
How Do Attorneys Review Sexual Harassment Claims?
As a primary part of his client intake sheet, this attorney asks potential clients if they are willing to take a lie detector test. This is designed to deter the untruthful clients. As a practical matter, this does not do much good since all clients agree that they will take a lie detector test.
What the attorney has to look for, then, are the following:
- Are there any other past or present employees who have been sexually harassed by the alleged harasser?
- Did anybody witness the harassment?
- Did the client report the harassment?
- Did the client receive any personal email, text messages or cards from the harasser?
- Did the client and the harasser have a prior relationship?
- Has the client sued other employers?
- Does the attorney believe the client?
Unlike criminal attorneys, sexual harassment attorneys should not make a claim on behalf of an alleged sexual harassment victim unless they believe the claim is true.
This old-school employment law attorney believes that he has an obligation not only to his client but also to the defendant, the defendant’s attorneys and to the court not to make a false claim and ruin the reputation of an innocent person. As a result, when this attorney represents a sexual harassment victim, the defendant’s lawyer and the court are generally sympathetic and are receptive to an early substantial settlement.