Los Angeles Sexual Harassment Lawyer

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Los Angeles Sexual Harassment Lawyer

Sexual Harassment Attorney in Los Angeles, CA

Los Angeles Sexual Harassment Lawyer

 

Every American worker in every industry has the right to expect a workplace free of sexual harassment. This type of behavior creates a hostile work environment for the victim, and they may be pressured into leaving their job to escape their situation. Worse, they may become victims of sexual assault and similar crimes. If you believe you have been subjected to sexual harassment in your workplace and internal conflict resolution options have failed to address the situation, you need a Los Angeles sexual harassment attorney.

The Law Offices of Miguel S. Ramirez: Legal Aid for Los Angeles Employees

When you work with a law firm to address sexual harassment, your legal team can help you put a stop to the harmful behaviors in question. If sexual harassment in your workplace has led to financial losses, you can rely on your attorney to recover compensation on your behalf. With a successful sexual harassment claim, you can also make sure that the individuals who harassed you are held accountable. No matter the legal action your unique situation entails, the Law Offices of Miguel S. Ramirez are ready to assist you.

What Should You Do if You’re Being Sexually Harassed at Work in Los Angeles?

Sometimes, victims may ignore the first instance of sexual harassment in hopes that it doesn’t happen again. However, no matter how many times you’re harassed, sexual harassment is an issue that should be taken seriously. Whether you were bothered one time or are harassed every day, seek the justice that you deserve with the help of our lead employment lawyer.

If you’re being sexually harassed in your Los Angeles workplace, follow these steps to take action:

  1. File a report with human resources.
  2. Report the incident to your employer.
  3. If no action is taken, find a lawyer who can guide you through filing a sexual harassment claim with the EEOC or the DFEH.
  4. Gather evidence that proves the incident or incidents took place, and submit your claim.
  5. If your case is accepted, it will then be investigated.
  6. Next, you will most likely move into the hearing and trial phases, in which both parties will present their cases. Your attorney can represent you and the damages you deserve during this time.

Why Should I Hire a Los Angeles Sexual Harassment Attorney?

los angeles sexual harassment lawyer

Employment laws in California often seem one-sided in favor of employers. For example, the at-will employment law appears to allow employers to fire employees with or without justification whenever they choose. While at-will employment does provide employers generous flexibility in terms of their hiring and firing decisions, it also provides employees with the option to leave a job whenever they like.

Unfortunately, many people who experience sexual harassment in the workplace ultimately lose their jobs from these experiences. Their employers may hide behind at-will employment laws to conceal their motives. Some are pressured to quit, while others are terminated for refusing sexual advances from their superiors or reporting sexual harassment from coworkers. These are just a few examples of how sexual harassment can cause tangible losses. In addition, the actual experience of sexual harassment can be incredibly traumatic as well.

Your Los Angeles sexual harassment lawyer will be invaluable when it comes to holding your employer responsible for your losses and the emotional distress you experienced. They can help you gather the evidence you will need to build your case against your employer. Then, your attorney can guide you through the process of filing a claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) or California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH).

What to Expect from the EEOC Claim Process

The EEOC is the federal agency responsible for handling and investigating claims of sexual harassment and discrimination in American workplaces. There are various laws in place at the state and federal levels designed to prevent this type of issue from arising. However, employers are responsible for enforcing these laws and upholding anti-harassment policies in their workplaces.

Any employee who experiences sexual harassment in the workplace should first report the issue through their employer’s internal conflict resolution process. If this fails to provide an acceptable solution or is not an option, the employee may proceed with a claim to the EEOC or the equivalent state agency, the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH). The EEOC will then request a complete explanation of your experiences and any evidence you can provide.

Common Behaviors That Qualify as Sexual Harassment

No one should feel uncomfortable in their workplace. Unfortunately, sexual harassment impacts countless employees across Los Angeles every day. As a result, their mental health and their ability to work are often affected. By understanding what constitutes sexual harassment, you’ll be better equipped to identify and report it when it happens to you or a coworker.

Sexual harassment can come in a myriad of forms, which is why it’s so important to be able to spot it in any environment. Some of the most reported instances of sexual harassment in California workplaces include:

    • Overt Sexual Remarks, Jokes, or Crude InsultsOvert sexual remarks, jokes, and crude insults are all harmful behaviors that create a hostile work environment. The workplace should be a professional environment, meaning that sexual jokes, insults directed at other employees, or displays of pornographic materials are inappropriate and prohibited. Any form of crude remarks, demeaning sexual jokes, or insults that involve sexual language can be considered sexual harassment when they are directed at specific employees.
    • Unwelcome Sexual References or AdvancesUnwelcome sexual references, sexual gestures, or sexual advances are all forms of sexual harassment in the workplace. While sexual references and gestures are not physical, they are still a violation of an employee’s privacy. Sexual references can include jokes about the appearance of an employee or discussions of their sexual life.Sexual gestures can include any lewd hand or body signs that implicate sexual behavior. Even if the person making the gestures considers them jokes, their behavior can constitute sexual harassment as long as they are making you uncomfortable through sexual behaviors.Sometimes, sexual references or gestures can turn into sexual advances as well. Unwelcome sexual advances in the workplace are not only illegal, but they can also put employees in extremely vulnerable and uncomfortable positions. Inappropriate sexual advances can look like:
      • A coworker/superior will not stop asking you to go on a date, although you’ve repeatedly declined.
      • A coworker/superior will not stop making sexual remarks about you or your body.
      • A coworker/superior touches you in a way that makes you uncomfortable. For example, your boss puts their hand on your shoulder or rubs your back when they “supervise” you.
      • A coworker/superior exposes themselves to you.
    • Requests for Sexual FavorsRequests for sexual favors, such as “quid pro quo” proposals from supervisors, are illegal and considered sexual harassment. While blatant requests for sexual favors may be easier to deny, many supervisors use their position of authority to take advantage of other workers. For example, a supervisor may request a sexual favor in exchange for a promotion or other job-related benefits. They may also threaten to fire an employee if they don’t comply.
    • Sexual AssaultSexual assault, including groping and sexual battery, is a criminal offense that is not tolerated in any workplace. This type of behavior will likely lead to serious criminal charges against the responsible party in addition to an EEOC claim of sexual harassment. If you were sexually assaulted at your place of work in Los Angeles, do not wait to bring your case to our firm. We are prepared to protect you and your rights and can do everything in our power to hold your employer accountable.

If any of these examples align with your recent experiences in your workplace, it is important to consult an experienced Los Angeles sexual harassment attorney as soon as possible. An experienced lawyer will not only help you hold your employer accountable for their actions but also help you secure compensation for your losses.

Potential Compensation for a Successful Sexual Harassment Claim

After you file your sexual harassment claim with the EEOC, they will investigate your claim to determine whether you have grounds for a civil claim against your employer. If the EEOC determines your claim is valid, they will send you a Notice of Right to Sue that allows you to proceed with a civil claim for sexual harassment. If your experience involved any criminal behavior, the EEOC may open a criminal case against your employer and/or the party responsible for the mistreatment you suffered.

Every sexual harassment claim is unique, and plaintiffs can potentially secure several types of damages from their successful claims. For example, if you were forced to leave your job due to a hostile work environment or were terminated for refusing sexual advances from your supervisor, you could be entitled to reinstatement. You may also receive back pay for the wages lost after your experience. It’s also possible to hold your employer accountable for any out-of-pocket expenses you incurred
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Victims of sexual harassment are often entitled to compensation for emotional distress. If the perpetrator engaged in any physical misconduct, such as sexual battery, they would likely face criminal charges in addition to civil liability. In this case, the victim may secure compensation for pain and suffering, and the judge handling the criminal case could award additional restitution. It’s also possible for the defendant to receive punitive damages if their behavior was particularly egregious.

Los Angeles Sexual Harassment FAQs

How Long Do You Have to File a Sexual Harassment Claim in California?

The state of California gives employees three years to file a workplace sexual harassment claim. Your three-year period begins on the most recent date that an incident took place. If you attempt to file after this three-year period, the DFEH will not be able to accept your claim because it is no longer valid. While filing a claim may be intimidating, we implore you to take legal action and hold your coworkers or superiors accountable.

What Are Your Rights in a Los Angeles Sexual Harassment Case?

California provides more extensive protections to its employees than other states. This allows employees more protection when filing claims like sexual harassment cases. The state not only gives you the right to file claims with state and federal agencies, but it also offers you protection from retaliation after you file a claim. This means your employer cannot punish you, such as by demoting or firing you, because you reported a coworker.

What Employers Have to Provide Sexual Harassment Training in California?

Any employer with five or more active employees must train them on sexual harassment laws in California. This mandated training is designed to remind employees of the consequences of sexual harassment and also help them to identify and prevent it in the workplace. Generally, a human resource professional or an attorney will do the training if it’s not online. The course covers basic information such as the definition of sexual harassment and how to help victims.

What Is Considered a Hostile Work Environment?

A hostile work environment can be created when one or more employers’ or employees’ behaviors make the workplace an uncomfortable space. Regarding sexual harassment, hostile work environments are often formed through consistent sexual remarks, degrading jokes, and unwelcome sexual advances. However, any sort of negative behavior that impacts your ability to work may create a hostile work environment.

Find Legal Counsel You Can Trust

Experiencing sexual harassment in the workplace can be distressing, isolating, and frustrating. It’s easy to feel alone after a sexual harassment incident, especially in the workplace you must endure every day. Fortunately, the right Los Angeles sexual harassment lawyer can provide the reassurance and support you need. The Law Offices of Miguel S. Ramirez have extensive experience representing clients in the Los Angeles area after a sexual harassment incident. We know the pain and damage that sexual harassment can cause, and our goal is to provide every client we represent with individualized and effective legal representation.

If you are prepared to take legal action in response to sexual harassment, we can help. The sooner you start building your claim, the more likely you are to succeed. Contact the Law Offices of Miguel S. Ramirez today to schedule your consultation with an experienced Los Angeles sexual harassment attorney.

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