Jacksonville Sexual Harassment Lawyer
Do you need to sue for sexual harassment in Jacksonville?
Sexual harassment in the workplace is a form of unlawful discrimination on the basis of gender and is prohibited under both federal and Florida laws. Sexual harassment is used by the harasser as a form of dominance and control with the intention of degrading the employee. Through sexual harassment, the victim is placed in a position of inferiority because of his or her gender.
Consequently, sexual harassment that goes unchecked and unpunished can cause permanent damage to an employee's career and emotional well-being. If the harasser is not legally opposed and held accountable, he or she will likely engage in similar misconduct in the future.
Types of Sexual Harassment
Sexual harassment occurs when an employee is targeted with unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other types of verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature.
Additional conditions that can be used to establish that sexual harassment has occurred include:
- The victim's submission to the advances or acceptance of the request is explicitly or implicitly made a term or condition of the person's continued employment or employment status, such as if a manager implies that the employee might be fired for refusing to perform sexual favors;
- The fact of the victim's submission to or acceptance of the advances is used as a basis in making employment decisions, such as if an employee who refused to perform sexual favors is denied a raise or demoted
- The conduct in question unreasonably interferes with an employee's ability to work effectively and comfortably in the workplace, due to the conduct's creation of an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment
Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment
There are two types of sexual harassment that are legally recognized, hostile work environment sexual harassment and quid pro quo sexual harassment. Quid pro quo sexual harassment related to the situation where an employee is either rewarded or denied a promotion or raise, or gets to keep their job or not, based on their response to an employer's sexual advances. It is important to know that even if you as an employee submitted to the sexual advances or comments made by an employer that does not mean that you are barred from making a complaint.
The Jacksonville employment lawyer at The Law Office of Shands M. Wulbern, P.A. is keenly aware of the legal ramifications and the process of pursuing a claim of quid pro quo sexual harassment in the workplace. We have assisted many clients in stopping the harassment and recovering financial compensation for quid pro quo sexual harassment claims. You are protected under both state and federal law from this type of behavior, and if you have been a victim, a claim can be filed against your employer, and should be.
Hostile Work Environment
In a hostile work environment, there may not be an actual advance or request for sexual favors but rather sufficient unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature, such as jokes, comments, or other offensive conduct. Both tangible employment action harassment and hostile work environment harassment are unlawful and can result in the employer being found liable for damages sustained.
Sexual harassment can be witnessed in the following forms:
- Requests for dates
- Requests for sexual favors
- Unwelcome hugs
- Unwelcome kisses
- Unwelcome touching
- Jokes of a sexual nature
- Comments of a sexual nature
- Display of inappropriate pictures
- Display of inappropriate images
- Demeaning comments or slurs based on gender
- Acts of a sexual nature
Take Legal Action with Help from Attorney Wulbern
Forms of sexual harassment can either be verbal, written, or physical. Written sexual misconduct can come in the form of e-mail, text, or social media. Even if the communications are not vulgar or patently offensive, they can be considered harassment if they are unwelcome and are intended to constitute an advance of a sexual nature.
If an employer's conduct causes interference with the employee's ability to perform his or her job, the conduct can be considered sexual harassment. Sexual harassment does not need to be sexual in nature.
It can include the following in certain circumstances:
- Comments or acts that are demeaning toward one gender
- Subjecting one gender and not the other to malicious treatment
- Threats or humiliation based upon gender
Unfortunately, many employees are afraid to report inappropriate conduct out of fear of adverse employment actions such as:
- Reduction in pay
- Denied promotion
- Denied training
- Denied advancement opportunities
- Refusal to hire
It is, however, unlawful for an employer to retaliate against the employee for lodging a reasonable and good faith complaint of sexual harassment. If an employee does report unwelcome and offensive conduct, he or she should expect that the conduct will be properly investigated and remedied by the employer. With the legal assistance of our Jacksonville sexual harassment attorney from the firm, you can have confidence that your case will be properly handled.
Victims of sexual harassment can receive help by taking appropriate measures to obtain information regarding their legal rights and the legal obligations of their employers. Valid claims for damages may be warranted to provide just compensation and an avenue for ensuring that future misconduct will not occur. At the Law Office of Shands M. Wulbern, P.A., your concerns of sexual harassment will be taken seriously. Our firm will make every effort to ensure that your legal rights and career are protected.
Get immediate access to a Jacksonville sexual harassment lawyer to discuss your situation in confidence by contacting the office today.