What Sexual Harassment Claims Can Arise When Co-Workers Date?

By: Law Offices of David Drexler  05/25/2015
Keywords: Personal Injury Attorney, Car Accident Lawyer, Car Accident Attorney

Presently, there are no sex harassment laws in California by statutes (under FEHA, the Fair Employment Housing Act) on the federal level or common law (under stare decisus case law precedence) that prohibit dating between employees of the same company. By the same token, there are no laws that prohibit an employer from having an official policy prohibiting co-worker (or supervisor-supervisee) dating. A consensual dating relationship, therefore, would appear to be legal in the absence of extenuating circumstances.

However, what would appear to be perfectly legal, when co-workers date, can give rise to liability under certain circumstances - and a situation where a may become necessary:

1. When that relationship is based on anything other than mutual consent.

2. Where the relationship spills over into the workplace creates a hostile work environment with inappropriate touching, sexual banter and sexually charged verbal comments.

3. When the relationship sours and there is retaliation. When a subordinate, for example, decides to end a relationship with his or her superior, a hostile environment may result from the disappointed individual. It becomes sexual harassment when retaliation occurs and the employer ratifies the retaliation by firing or harassing the victim.

4. When the relationship is a quid pro quo. This is a Latin term (translation: “this for that”) that can mean getting hired, or receiving a raise, a promotion or preferred assignments that are contingent on sexual favors or maintaining a relationship.

5. When a romantic advance is refused. If someone has refused the advances of a superior, then observes a co-worker who accepted similar advances from the same person who then receives a promotion or other benefits, it may be the basis of a sexual harassment claim. The law requires the employee to show substantial evidence of retaliatory intent following a termination.

In all instances where the services of a sexual harassment attorney may be warranted, it is beneficial to keep a diary of events and to report complaints with human resources departments when something occurs which feels wrong and appears to constitute inappropriate sexual conduct in the workplace.

Hire an experienced sexual harassment attorney

Your wages may be lost and your career damaged if you are subject to a hostile work environment relating to inter-company romantic relationships. With skilled legal counsel, those damages can be mitigated with recovery of lost wages and damages due to emotional distress.

R. Klettke is a freelance writer. He writes about personal injury and medical malpractice law and other matters of jurisprudence.

Important Advisory: This article is not intended to provide legal advice upon which you or anyone else should rely in making any decisions regarding the instituting or prosecuting of a legal claim. Laws and rules relating to the bringing of a claim vary widely from state to state. You should always contact a personal injury attorney to obtain information as to the rules and the laws pertaining to any claim you might have.

Keywords: Brain Injury Lawyer, Burn Injury Lawyer, Car Accident Attorney, Car Accident Lawyer, Dog Bite Attorney, Dog Bite Injury Lawyer, Personal Injury Attorney, Slip And Fall Lawyer, wrongful death attorney, Wrongful Death Lawyer

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