Requests For Sexual Favors
Requests for sexual favors are types of workplace sexual harassment that managers often inflict on employees. Higher-ups may take advantage of positions of power to request sexual favors in return for jobs, promotions, raises, or other opportunities in the workplace. Whether the employee takes the manager up on his/her offer doesn’t matter. Victims of this type of harassment can seek retribution through a few different legal outlets. If you or someone you know has recently encountered this type of situation, speak to an attorney at Winer, McKenna & Burritt, LLP. We’ve helped hundreds of clients get out of similar situations and can offer personalized legal counsel.
Quid Pro Quo Harassment
A case in which a manager, coworker, or another person requests sexual favors in return for employment opportunities is quid pro quo harassment. Translated, quid pro quo means “something for something.” Any harassment case involving the exchange of sexual favors in return for something else, typically in a manager-employment relationship, is a quid pro quo case. This is also true if the manager offers to not do something in return for sexual favors, such as not fire or demote the employee. Job applicants, company employees, and other staff members may find themselves victims of quid pro quo harassment.
To allege this type of harassment, a claimant must prove that he/she was an employee or job applicant at the company, the alleged harasser made unwanted sexual advances or other actions, and that certain job benefits or employment decisions hinged on the claimant accepting the alleged conduct. The claimant must also prove that the alleged harasser was a supervisor or agent of the company, and that the alleged harasser’s actions harmed the claimant.
Harms can be physical, emotional, or financial. For example, the claimant could sue for reimbursement of wages, a job, or a promotion he/she would have received were it not for the harassment. The claimant might also sue for mental and emotional harms if the harasser’s actions were severe enough. The court might assign punitive damages to punish the harasser or company for negligence or unlawful conduct. Even if the claimant submitted to the alleged harasser’s requests, he or she could file a claim for quid pro quo harassment.
Suing for Workplace Sexual Harassment
Suing someone for requests for sexual favors can result in financial compensation for lost wages, lost employment benefits and opportunities, and emotional distress. If the claimant lost his or her job because of the harassment, the courts may order reinstatement. The claimant must file within 180 days of the incident to qualify for compensation via the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). If you file with a state agency, you have 300 days from the date of the incident to file a claim. It is typically best to file your claim as soon as you decide this is the right course of action for you.
While victims can remedy some workplace harassment situations through internal human resources departments or with the EEOC, others need a lawsuit to get the results they want. We highly recommend retaining an employment law attorney for the complex process of suing and employer. Winer, McKenna & Burritt, LLP, can help you gather any applicable evidence and take your case to mediation or the civil court system.
Our firm can help you properly file a complaint with the right agencies and go up against a large company. We can also help if you received requests for sexual favors outside of the workplace. This is still sexual harassment, and deserves attention from experienced attorneys. To discuss your potential claim with our caring lawyers, call (510) 433-1000 or contact us online. Our consultations are completely free and at no obligation.