Our Columbia Sexual Harassment Attorney Explains: What Qualifies as Sexual Harassment?
Sexual harassment is legally defined as unwelcome sexual advances in the workplace that affect an employee’s ability to do his or her job. If you experienced this behavior at work, contact our sexual harassment attorney to learn about your legal options.
Despite what many people may think, harassment is not always committed by a man against a woman; it may be committed by a woman against a man, or between two people of the same gender. It also does not have to be committed by a supervisor against an employee; the harasser could be a co-worker, a supervisor without direct authority over a victim, or sometimes even a non-employee.
Common scenarios for sexual harassment include:
- Unwanted touching, including physically blocking a person’s movements.
- Unwanted sexual advances.
- Targeting a victim for hostile or offensive treatment because of his or her gender.
- Offering benefits like a raise or promotion in exchange for sexual favors.
- Displaying sexually suggestive materials in the workplace.
- Graphic commentaries on and suggestions about a victim’s body, or using sexually suggestive language to describe a victim.
If you or someone you care about has been the victim of sexual harassment in the workplace, contact our Columbia sexual harassment lawyer at (803) 454-1200 or use our contact form to get a free a consultation.
Cases Handled by Our Sexual Harassment Lawyers in Columbia Fall Into Two Basic Categories:
- The harasser uses his or her position of power to explicitly or implicitly make the victim’s job, duties or benefits dependent on providing sexual favors.
- The harasser’s insulting, intimidating or ridiculing behavior creates a hostile work environment, which unreasonably interferes with the victim’s job or denies the victim’s right to a safe workplace.
Regardless of the situation in which you experienced harassment, you have a right to legal protection. Talk to our sexual harassment attorneys about your case to learn your next steps.
Sexual Harassment Is Illegal, Plain and Simple
Sexual harassment is illegal under the federal Civil Rights Act, which makes it illegal to discriminate on the basis of sex as well as other protected categories like race, national origin and religion. It applies to all businesses with 15 employees or more, as well as all levels of government and labor organizations. Other, special laws may apply to employees of government contractors, universities and others. If sexual harassment is severe enough to include assault, false imprisonment, invasion of privacy or other serious charges, it may also fall under South Carolina state law.
If you have questions about harassment you experienced, ask our South Carolina sexual harassment attorneys. Our experience means we’ve handled cases like yours and can provide the legal guidance you need.
Victims of sexual harassment often hesitate to come forward because they’re not sure their situation “counts,” fear that they’ll be fired if they say anything or don’t want to cause trouble for colleagues they once liked and respected. But sexual harassment is a serious crime, and its victims have rights. Those rights include laws that make it illegal for an employer to retaliate against an employee who reports sexual harassment, and provide steep penalties for those who do retaliate. Employees who feel sexually harassed do have the duty to inform their employers of the unwelcome behavior; an employer must make a good-faith, substantial effort to correct the situation in order to avoid liability and worker’s compensation claim. Our workplace sexual harassment lawyer specializes in handling cases of harassment on the job. If you fear retaliation, call us for a free consultation to discuss your situation and learn your options.
Contact Our Columbia Sexual Harassment Attorneys Today
The Louthian Law Firm is proud to have won a large settlement for a sexual harassment victim in April of 2007. If you believe you or someone you care about may also have been sexually harassed at work, we want to help. We have worked with injured South Carolinians since 1959; we’re sympathetic to clients who are going through a tough time in their lives.
Contact us today at (803) 454-1200 for a confidential evaluation of your case, or fill out our online form.