Sexual harassment in the workplace is not something that has existed for only half a year (though if you look at the headlines, it may seem that way). Workplace sexual harassment in Los Angeles and all other parts of California and all across the United States has been around for centuries, and victims have made their fair share of mistakes.
Given that the subject of sexual harassment is coming under increased scrutiny in the media, it does not make sense why anti-sexual harassment advocates fail to educate millions of Americans across the county about the importance of avoiding certain unthinkable mistakes that may destroy the legal validity of their complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or lawsuit.
Today, we brought our Los Angeles sexual harassment attorney from the JML Law to shed light on some of the most common mistakes victims of groping, unwanted sexual advances, inappropriate touching, requests for sexual favors and other forms of sexual harassment in the workplace make.
Not telling the harasser to stop
One of the biggest mistakes from both the legal and common-sense standpoint. If you are being sexually harassed at work and you want it to stop, it would make sense to tell the harasser to back off. But easier said than done, as not all victims can muster up enough courage to confront their employers or coworkers. Let’s also not forget that in the vast majority of such cases, victims are women and harassers are men, which makes the whole situation even more unequal and scarier.
However, telling the harasser to stop is vital in order to (1) let the harasser know unambiguously and clearly that his/her behavior is unwanted, (2) have evidence that the harasser knew his/her behavior was unwanted, and, if the harasser keeps harassing you even after confronting him/her, (3) have evidence that the harasser kept harassing you despite your requests to stop. You can confront the harasser in a verbal or written form (the latter could have more legal value; do not forget to save the copy of your written request).
Not documenting sexual harassment
Most victims of workplace sexual harassment in Los Angeles and all across California underestimate the importance of documenting each incident of harassment that took place. Descriptions of your encounters and detailing what happened exactly will be an invaluable source of evidence against the harasser during court hearings. In order to document sexual harassment incidents properly and in a way that would resonate with juries and judges later on, it is highly advised to hire a Los Angeles sexual harassment lawyer at the JML Law.
Not reporting the harassment early on
The longer you wait to report acts of sexual harassment in the workplace, the more legal headaches accumulate. You may face a plethora of legal obstacles if you choose to wait too long to file a sexual harassment complaint, including but not limited to California’s statute of limitations and the so-called “avoidable consequences defense” that can be mounted by your employer.
Before you choose to take action and file a complaint with the Human Resources (HR) department, be warned that HR employees may be covering up for the employer or other individuals within the company that sexually harassed you. That is why it is critical to be represented by a skilled sexual harassment attorney in California in order to avoid making mistakes, maximize the value of your claim, and successfully sue your harasser for the wrongful acts.
Contact the JML Law to get a free consultation about your case. Only an experienced lawyer will help you ensure that you are not making any mistakes along the way. Call our offices at 818-610-8800 or send us an email.