"I've been subject to sexual harassment. What is my case worth?"
It has been said that “the value of something is worth what somebody will pay for it.”
This is certainly true in sexual harassment cases. That is because there are so many diverse factors which go into determining the value of the case.
These factors are the following:
- Whether the case is to be decided by a jury, judge or an arbitrator
- The severity of the sexual harassment
- The public exposure of the Defendant
- The financial worth of the Defendant
- The lawyers on both sides
- The attitude of the Plaintiff
- Who is the mediator, if one is used?
The Advantages of Jury Trials vs. Arbitration
Let me explain the above.
A jury is more favorable to the Plaintiff, and a judge or an arbitrator is more favorable to the Defendant.
The severity of the sexual harassment will depend upon whether there was an overt act, such as a rape or an offer to pay for sex, as opposed to verbal statements that made the Plaintiff feel uncomfortable.
If the Defendant is well-known and is concerned for its reputation, the value will be greater.
Even if you have a great case, if the Defendant does not have any money, the case has little or no value.
The quality and the reputation of the attorneys and their interaction are important. Generally, Defendants are represented by highly-paid, highly-competent attorneys. The defendant’s attorneys will not recommend settlement unless they feel that they will lose. That is why it is important to have a Plaintiff’s attorney who is highly-skilled, well-known to the other side and has a track record for winning sexual harassment cases.
The attitude of the Plaintiff is important because if the Plaintiff accepts the recommendation of the Plaintiff’s attorney, it will receive the maximum value of the case.
The mediator is important because it is the mediator’s recommendation after consideration of the above factors which determines the amount of the settlement.