Sexual Harassment Claims: A Guide For Employers
Sexual harassment can be toxic to a business. It exposes the company to legal and financial liability while reducing employee productivity and destroying workplace morale. For these reasons and more, it is critical to implement preventive measures and to appropriately respond to sexual harassment when it does occur.
We can help. At Kenneth I. Gross & Associates, our attorneys draw on more than 50 years of combined experience to help businesses protect themselves against all manner of legal risks.
Protecting Your Employees From Harassment
Mandatory anti-harassment training is good, but it’s just a first step. As the owner of or representative for your company, it is your legal and moral obligation to demonstrate that sexual harassment will not be tolerated. In practice, this means following up about any rumor or report of harassment and showing that you are ready to take corrective action.
It is a mistake to sweep allegations under the rug or try to resolve things quietly. Not only does this usually fail to solve the problem, it also sends the wrong message that sexual harassment is permissible. If employees can see that sexual harassment claims are taken seriously, however, it will likely reduce or prevent future incidents.
Protecting Your Company From Liability
If an employee was sexually harassed at work (or at a work-related function) by another employee or superior, the company is not automatically liable. Rather, the employer is responsible for addressing and correcting the behavior fairly and reasonably. This means taking the time to listen to the alleged victim, investigating the claim and speaking with the accused. Follow-up is also necessary to ensure that the situation is resolved.
In order to protect your company from liability, the entire process should be carefully documented, preferably with the involvement of an attorney. If the case ever goes to trial, you must be able to demonstrate that you offered an appropriate, timely response to allegations, conducted an impartial investigation and took necessary steps to stop the harassment and protect the victim. Working with an experienced lawyer like those at our firm can reduce the likelihood and potential damage of future litigation.
Contact Us For A Free Initial Consultation
With two convenient locations in Los Angeles and Rosemead, the Law Offices of Kenneth I. Gross & Associates is dedicated to serving the legal needs of businesses and business owners. To take advantage of a free initial consultation, call 213-784-4232, or toll-free at 866-634-2816. You can also send us an email.