Hostile Work Environment
Federal laws and some state and city laws protect individuals from discrimination on the basis of sex. This prohibition on sex discrimination extends to sexual harassment, which includes conduct that unreasonably interferes with an individual’s work performance or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment.
The determination of whether the conduct is sufficiently severe or pervasive to constitute a hostile work environment must be made on a case-by-case basis because not all offensive conduct is actionable under the sexual harassment laws. Please keep in mind that most employment laws have short time limits for filing claims and, as a result, it is best to seek legal advice as soon as you can. There are certain types of conduct and situations where actions by a manager or co-worker may rise to the level of a hostile work environment, for example:
- Inappropriate comments or jokes of a sexual nature that you find offensive or unwelcome, including sexual advances or suggestive remarks;
- Comments or questions about your sex life, body or clothing;
- Displaying, posting or distributing emails, pictures, posters, magazines or other content of an explicit or sexual nature; or
- Inappropriate touching, including kissing, hugging, patting, rubbing or intentionally brushing up against you.
Employees who have experienced a sex-based hostile work environment will find sensitive, skilled attorneys at Outten & Golden who are committed to advocating for victims of sexual harassment. Our lawyers help employees experiencing a hostile work environment by urging the employer to address and improve the situation; at times, that can involve moving the employee or harasser to a different part of the organization, or finding some other workable solution and/or compensating the employee.
Contact Hostile Work Environment Attorneys
If you believe you have been subjected to sexual harassment and/or a hostile work environment, please contact the firm through the ”Contact Us" form or by calling us in the New York, Chicago, San Francisco, or Washington, DC office (see bottom of page for phone numbers) to begin the Outten & Golden intake process.