Skilled Sexual Harassment Lawyers In San Mateo, California
Employees are legally entitled to a work environment free from unwanted sexual advances and harassment. If you are experiencing sexual harassment in the workplace, you should not suffer in silence. At Winer, Burritt & Scott, our skilled San Mateo sexual harassment attorneys can help hold your employer responsible for the actions of their managers and supervisors. With a civil claim, we help seek justice on your behalf. You may be entitled to compensation for your emotional distress, lost wages, or other damages associated with your harassment. With Winer, Burritt & Scott, you have experienced legal advocates in your corner so you can move forward with your life.
What Is Considered Sexual Harassment In California?
In California, our laws prohibit both the employer and their employees from sexually harassing another individual in the workplace. The term sexual harassment involves any negative, unwanted, or inappropriate behavior that is directed at another worker based on their:
- Gender, gender identity, or gender expression
- Marital status
- Medical conditions associated with pregnancy
Under our California Fair Employment and Housing Act, sexual harassment in the workplace can take two forms – quid pro quo harassment and hostile work environment.
- Quid pro quo harassment is when a job, promotion, or other benefit is conditional on submitting to conduct based on sex.
- A hostile work environment is when unwelcome conduct or comments create an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment. This behavior does not have to be specifically directed at you. The harassment, however, must be so pervasive or severe to be considered unlawful.
If you have experienced unwanted sexual behavior in the workplace, the San Mateo sexual harassment attorneys at Winer, Burritt & Scott can help protect your rights and hold your employer accountable.
What Behavior Can Be Considered Workplace Sexual Harassment?
Sexual harassment is repeated and deliberate behavior in the workplace that is unwanted, unwelcome, or abusive. It can include:
- Unwelcome or inappropriate physical touching, kissing, hugging
- Making inappropriate gestures
- Making inappropriate comments about appearance or physical attributes
- Requests for sex
- Offering employment benefits for sexual favors
- Discriminatory behavior based on someone’s gender or orientation
- Sharing sexually explicit images, texts, or videos
- Asking sexually motivating questions
- Making sexual suggestions, innuendos, or jokes
- Retaliation after negative responses to sexual advances
While some conduct involving sexuality may seem innocent enough, if you feel offended, harassed, or abused by a supervisor or coworker, you should get the advice of an attorney. At Winer, Burritt & Scott, our skilled team of San Mateo sexual harassment attorneys is here to help.
How Is An Employer Held Liable For The Conduct Of Its Employees?
When sexual harassment is happening in a workplace, an employer is legally responsible for taking all reasonable steps toward investigating claims and taking appropriate action. If action is not taken, they can be held liable. Even if the harassment was not by a supervisor, if the company was aware of it and did nothing to stop it, they may be held responsible for the conduct of that employee.
Sexual harassment can have an overwhelming effect on employee productivity and can lead to job loss, decreased pay, and lost career opportunities. Furthermore, a victim of workplace sexual harassment can experience serious emotional distress, requiring the assistance of mental health counselors or other care. The employee who has been the subject of the harassment may be entitled to recover compensation for these damages and potentially qualify for punitive damages against the company.
Compensation Available To You If You Have Been The Subject Of Sexual Harassment
Experiencing workplace sexual harassment can be extremely disruptive to both your work and personal life. You may feel pressured to seek another job or counseling to help you deal with your situation. Trying to cope with the harassment can be a continual battle, resulting in depression and anxiety. If you have been the subject of sexual harassment, you may be entitled to compensation for damages such as:
- Medical costs for doctor’s visits, counseling, or prescription medication that may have been prescribed to help you cope with your situation
- Lost wages if you took time off for counseling, worked fewer hours because of your situation, or took a demotion to get away from the harassing behavior
- Job reinstatement and back pay if you were retaliated against for reporting the harassment
- Non-economic damages for pain and suffering, emotional distress, and mental anguish
Getting the guidance of a San Mateo sexual harassment attorney can help you understand if you have legal grounds for a harassment lawsuit and what the potential value of your claim may be.
Getting Legal Assistance If You Have Been Harassed
No one should have to tolerate sexual harassment. If you have been a victim of sexual harassment in the workplace, understanding your legal rights and options can be an important first step to getting free of a toxic working environment.
At Winer, Burritt & Scott, our experienced San Mateo sexual harassment attorneys can help you seek justice and hold the responsible parties accountable. Call us or contact us through our website for a free, confidential consultation.