Phillips & Associates

Supervisor Sexual Harassment on Long Island

Workplace Rights Lawyers Serving Long Island Employees

Long Island is densely populated and made up of four New York counties. Suffolk County is 50.8% female, while Nassau County is 51.5% female. Workplace sexual harassment can be perpetrated by supervisors, managers, coworkers, clients, or customers. If you are subject to supervisor sexual harassment at your workplace, you should consult an experienced attorney. At Phillips & Associates, our Long Island sexual harassment lawyers may be able to help you recover damages if you are harmed by misconduct on the job. We are dedicated to fighting employer misconduct in its many forms. Our employment attorneys can help you navigate your workplace if you are experiencing sexual harassment. We can also assist in drafting a complaint of sexual harassment to put your employer on notice. We offer a free consultation with our sexual harassment attorneys and no upfront fees.

Holding a Supervisor Accountable for Sexual Harassment

Both federal and state laws protect you from being sexually harassed by your supervisor. Sexual harassment includes a wide range of offensive conduct, such as inappropriate sexual jokes, groping, the posting of offensive remarks on an online message board, emailing pornographic images, and even rape. Both men and women can be victims of supervisor sexual harassment, and the harassment can be between people who are the same sex, as well as people of different sexes. Sexual harassment doesn’t only occur at the workplace. Sexual harassment can occur after work, at a bar, on a business trip, at a holiday party or office outing.

Your supervisor's actions are imputed to the employer. That is, the employer can be held liable even if it did not actually know about the harassment. For example, if your supervisor asks for a sexual favor in exchange for writing a good performance review about you, this could be sexual harassment even if the employer did not authorize it or was not told about it.

Types of Supervisor Sexual Harassment

Courts recognize two types of sexual harassment. These are quid pro quo harassment and hostile work environment harassment. Only supervisors and others with authority over you in the workplace can commit quid pro quo harassment. This type of harassment occurs if the supervisor demands that you succumb to harassment or requests for sexual favors as a condition of receiving a job benefit. You can bring a quid pro quo claim even if the request for a sexual favor happened only once.

On the other hand, hostile work environment harassment claims usually involve a pattern of behavior. A single event must be truly severe to be considered actionable sexual harassment. In most cases, hostile work environment harassment occurs when a supervisor (or coworker or customer) repeatedly harasses an employee on the basis of their sex. The harassment could include physical or sexual conduct, or it could also include negative remarks about women. For example, if your supervisor routinely remarks about all women being incompetent sluts, this would qualify as a hostile work environment claim.

If you are suing for damages based on your supervisor's sexual harassment of you, you will need to meet an objective and subjective standard. You must be able to say that you subjectively believed that your supervisor's behavior was abusive or offensive. You must also be able to show that a reasonable person in your position would have objectively believed that the behavior was hostile, abusive, or offensive.

Sexual Harassment under Title VII

Your attorney may be able to bring your claim under Title VII. If the harassment was committed by your superior, such as a supervisor, and there was a tangible employment action, such as firing, demoting, or negative changes to assignments, the employer is liable. For example, if your supervisor keeps asking you out on a date and bringing you sexualized gifts, and then when you tell him that his conduct is unwelcome, he gives you less desirable assignments, the employer would be liable. Similarly, if the harassment is hostile work environment harassment, the employer can be liable. However, if no tangible adverse employment action occurs, the employer may be able to defend on the basis that it used reasonable care to prevent harassment and took steps to correct the situation. Under Title VII, your damages will be capped.

You may also have a claim under the New York State Human Rights Law. No punitive damages are permitted for claims arising under this law. However, the anti-sexual harassment provisions apply to even those employers on Long Island that have just one employee.

Consult an Experienced Long Island Attorney for Your Sexual Harassment Case

At Phillips & Associates, we aggressively fight employer misconduct in the workplace, including when supervisors take advantage of their position to harass their employees. Contact our Long Island sexual harassment attorneys at (516) 365-3731 or through our online form to get started on your next legal steps. We are contingency attorneys assisting victims of sexual harassment in Long Island.

585 Stewart Ave #330
Garden City, NY 11530
Tel: 516-365-3731
Fax: 212-901-2107

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