Sexual Harassment

Houston Sexual Harassment Lawsuits

Your Civil Right Against Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment is a type of sexual discrimination in the workplace that is carried out by a company supervisor, co-worker, client, or customer. It can make working conditions intolerable. Despite the widespread prevalence of sexual harassment, sexual harassment is illegal under federal and Texas state laws, and you have legal recourse to protect your rights. At Guerra & Farah, PLLC, our employment lawyers pursue compensation on behalf of victims of sexual harassment in Houston and elsewhere throughout the state. We have extensive knowledge and experience in sexual harassment cases, and our Houston employment lawyers are available 24/7 to assist you.

What determines whether behavior is sexual harassment?

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) explains that for behavior to be considered sexual harassment, the conduct must be so frequent or severe that it creates a hostile work environment. It also must result in negative work consequences such as adverse employment actions against the harassment victim. For example, demotion, termination, or other penalties based on the employee's rejection of the employer's sexual advances would constitute sexual harassment. Sexual harassment does not have to take the form of requesting sexual favors or unwanted sexually implicit innuendos. It can also simply be derogatory comments made about a person's sex or discussions of a sexual nature which make the individual feel uncomfortable.

Examples of Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment can take many forms, from slight to extreme, but is generally divided into two main categories:

Quid Pro Quo Harassment
Job benefits that are offered in exchange for sexual favors or for accepting sexual advances are quid pro quo, which is Latin for "one thing for another." Repercussions from refusing such a sexual proposition generally would include adverse consequences such as demotion, denial of promotion, termination or wage reduction.

Hostile Work Environment
The key element of a hostile work environment is the repeated aspect of sex discrimination or behavior. The frequency of physical contact, sexual remarks, or offensive comments based on the person's sex is the factor that makes the behavior sexual harassment. An isolated incident does not usually constitute sexual harassment unless the behavior is extreme, such as in cases of attempted rape, rape, and sexual battery.

Steps to Take When Dealing with Sexual Harassment

Speaking with the Human Resources representatives of the company to complain about sexual harassment is usually the first step an employee should take. Taking this step allows the company the opportunity to correct the situation. If the company fails to take action or is ineffective in remedying the situation, then you can file a complaint with the EEOC or Texas Commission on Human Rights. When pursuing a lawsuit, both state and federal courts hear sexual harassment cases.

Our employment lawyers can review your complaint and advise you as to the best course of legal action to take. Depending on the details of your case, we may be able to seek monetary damages for back pay, emotional pain and suffering, attorney fees, court costs, and if particularly severe, punitive damages. To learn whether you have grounds for legal action and to find out how much you could receive if you win your lawsuit, contact us now or fill out our free case evaluation.

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