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Columbus Sexual Harassment Lawyer

What Does Sexual Harassment Look Like?

Sexual harassment does not affect just women; men can also be sexually harassed. Sexual harassment comes in many forms, such as:

 

  • Requesting or demanding sexual favors
  • Staring inappropriately
  • Making offensive comments about appearance, clothing, or body parts
  • Telling sexual jokes
  • Making lewd gestures
  • Touching employees in any way that makes them feel uncomfortable (i.e., patting, pinching, or intentionally brushing up against an employee’s body)
  • Sending, forwarding, or soliciting sexually suggestive letters, notes, emails, and/or images to employees

 

Under Title VII and Ohio law, there are 2 types of sexual harassment, both of which have different assertions and items that must be proved in order for a case to succeed.

 

1. Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment

Quid pro quo sexual harassment describes a scenario in which one’s employment, pay, benefits, job title or position, or opportunities for advancing in the work place are withheld on the condition of sexual advances or favors. Quid pro quo sexual harassment is illegal, regardless of whether the harassment is explicitly or implicitly stated.

 

Proving Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment

In order to prevail in a quid pro quo sexual harassment case, you (the employee) must assert and prove the following:

 

  • You are a member of a protected class;
  • You were subjected to unwanted sexual harassment in the form of sexual advances or requests for sexual favors;
  • The harassment was based on sex;
  • You were forced to submit to sexual advances or sexual favors due to the expressed or implied conditions of receiving tangible benefits to the job or your refusal to submit would be tangibly detrimental to your job; and
  • The actions and conduct can be attributed to the employer. For example, if an employer fails to take action for an employee sexually harassing you, that employer can be held liable for the employee’s actions.

 

2. Hostile Work Environment Sexual Harassment

Hostile work environment sexual harassment describes a situation in which an employee experiences unwelcome advances, sexual innuendo, sharing and/or soliciting suggestive letters, notes, emails, and/or images. A hostile work environment sexual harassment claim depends on the individual facts and does not need to be proven that conduct was motivated by sexual desire.

 

Courts examine the following 3 factors to determine whether or not the harassment created a hostile work environment:

 

  1. Whether or not the conduct was severe enough to alter the terms and conditions of employment;
  2. If the conduct was subjectively offensive to the victim; and
  3. Whether or not the conduct would be offensive to a reasonable person.

 

Proving Hostile Work Environment Sexual Harassment

In order to prevail in a hostile work environment sexual harassment case, you must assert and prove that the conduct:

 

  • Was unwelcome;
  • Based on your sex;
  • Was so severe or pervasive, it affected your work performance and created an abusive work environment; and
  • Can be attributed to your employer.

 

Contact a Columbus Sexual Harassment Lawyer

If you believe you are experiencing sexual harassment at your workplace, contact a Columbus sexual harassment lawyer right away. The Columbus office of Bryant Legal, LLC can advise you on how to stop sexual harassment at work; if the conduct does not stop, we will create a plan to help you depart from work while preserving your claims. If you have been terminated or experienced retaliation as a result of reporting sexual harassment, contact Bryant Legal, LLC’s Columbus office at 614-704-0546, email attorney Daniel Bryant at dbryant@bryantlegalllc.com, or fill out our contact form immediately.