In a legal context, the term “sexual harassment” refers to any unwanted sexual conduct or advances. When it happens in the workplace, this type of behavior leads to a hostile or intimidating work environment.
Grounds for a legitimate sexual harassment claim can range in severity from offensive jokes and comments to physical assault. There are both federal and state laws in place to protect employees from workplace sexual harassment.
If you or someone you know has experienced sexual harassment at work, it is important to take steps to protect yourself. Below, we will discuss steps for filing a claim of sexual harassment.
Report the Behavior to Supervisors
Telling the harasser to stop their problematic behavior is the first step you should take. However, this may not result in a resolution.
If the person does not stop harassing you, report the harassment to supervisors in your company. Most businesses have specific policies for reporting problems in the workplace.
Make sure to follow your company’s guidelines when filing a complaint. Also, keep notes and records of your experience.
Document your conversations and interactions. If you send or receive written correspondence about the harassment, make sure to keep copies.
This information will help you establish a clear record of events in case of a lawsuit. Your records should include:
- Names of relevant parties
- Dates of communication
- Times and locations of inappropriate behavior
A skilled attorney will rely on this important evidence to recover damages in your case.
File with the EEOC
Depending on the nature of your situation, you may be required to file a complaint before pursuing a lawsuit. If your claim falls under federal law, you must file a harassment claim through the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) before you file litigation.
For answers to questions regarding sexual harassment claims, contact Fraley Law firm by calling (813) 229-8300.