Q Can anyone other than my employer be liable for sexually harassing me in the workplace?
When most people think of sexual harassment of an employee, they think of a male supervisor sexually harassing a female employee. But what happens if the harasser is a supervisor of the same sex, or a co-worker who has no control over the terms of your employment? In this article, we discuss who can be liable for compensating you under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Who Can You Hold Responsible for Illegal Sexual Harassment?
Sexual harassment involves unwanted sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal and physical conduct of a sexual nature where acceptance or rejection of the advances will affect the employee’s employment or the actions create a hostile work environment. Title VII protects victims in a wide variety of illegal harassment situations, including the following:
- Harassment of one co-worker by another
- Subordinate’s harassment of a supervisor
- A woman sexually harassing a man
- Same sex harassment—a man harassing a man or a woman harassing another woman
- Third party perpetrators, such as vendors, customers, suppliers, and clients
In any of these situations, the victim could have a claim against the perpetrator of the sexual harassment. Depending on the status of the harasser and the facts surrounding the illegal actions, the victim’s employer could also face liability for not taking action to stop the harassment, or creating an environment that encourages it.
Employees who experience sexual harassment in the workplace sometimes assume they can only be a victim of it if it's directed at them. However, they may resolutions under Title VII if they were affected by the unwanted conduct, whether or not they were the intended victim.
Let Me Help You
If you're a victim of sexual harassment, contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible. These cases are challenging to prove, but as someone sensitive to the delicate nature of these situations, I can help you build your claim, negotiate a settlement for you, and file your complaint before the deadline expires. Call me today at 888.716.8021 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.