The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) defines sexual harassment as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature that can impact a person’s employment based on their submission to or rejection of this conduct. Also, sexual harassment occurs when the conduct unreasonably interferes with an employee’s work performance or creates a hostile work environment.
Usually, sexual harassment allegations in the workplace are separated into hostile work environment harassment and quid pro quo harassment. The first type happens when an employee is subject to unwanted jokes, sexual images, or threats while on the job. Quid pro quo is when a person in a position of authority insists on sexual favors in exchange for raises, promotions, and other benefits. Victims should hire one of the most reputable Long Island City Sexual Harassment Lawyers to help them determine if the conduct of their abuser qualifies as sexual harassment.
What Victims of Sexual Harassment Can Do
Usually, an employee who has been subjected to sexual harassment in the workplace should be clear that the misconduct was unwanted. Companies often have steps that victims can follow. If a company does not have these steps, the employee can report the harassment to a supervisor. If the harasser is the supervisor or manager themselves, the employee can file a complaint with the EEOC or state agency. Laws are in place to protect the employee from possible retaliation if they decide to speak up and file a formal sexual harassment complaint.
What to Know When Filing a Complaint with the EEOC
Victims of sexual harassment in the workplace can file a claim with the EEOC. But, there are some guidelines in terms of timing and the process to keep in mind. Generally, victims should file a charge with the local or closest EEOC branch within 180 days of the date the perceived harassment happened. The agency should notify the employer within ten days regarding the issuance of a formal charge before launching an investigation into the matter. Then, the EEOC will determine the validity of the claim. The next step is usually the process of working to resolve the problem before the employer and employee. If both parties don’t reach an agreement during this stage, the EEOP may issue a “right to sue” letter for the victim. After getting this letter, the employee should file a lawsuit within 90 days. Because of the many deadlines and considerations involved in filing a sexual harassment lawsuit, it only makes sense for victims to work with a reputable attorney.