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How Do I File a Sexual Harassment Claim?

If you are sexually harassed in a public place, the first thing that you should do is you should contact the manager. After you have spoken to that manager, you want to get the manager’s name and contact information, and then you want to contact the corporation. When you deliver that letter or e-mail, it should be in a trackable form. You should give them approximately two weeks to respond, and if they do not respond in the two week time frame, then you can escalate it to another area in their corporate department or you can go ahead and contact an attorney. The process is somewhat different if you’re filing a sexual harassment claim at work. First and foremost, the very first thing that you should do when you feel that you’ve been sexually harassed or that you have witnessed somebody else being sexually harassed, you should go to the employee handbook to see what kind of guidelines or procedures that they have in there to complain about sexual harassment. You should send an e-mail or a letter, again, via trackable form. You bring with you to the appointment or the meeting that they’ve set up any and all documentation that you have regarding the sexual harassment incident. You should give them approximately two weeks to get back to you about where they are with their investigation, and if you haven’t heard from them in two weeks, you should follow up. If, after that period of time and following up, they do not respond, then you should escalate it either to another department and contact an attorney.

Employment Attorneys Representing Workers in New York City

Sexual harassment in the workplace is a form of sex discrimination that is prohibited by both federal and state laws. Harassment may involve any type of unwelcome, sexually charged conduct, including unwelcome advances, requests for sexual favors, or other words or physical actions of a sexual nature. If the harassment results or threatens to result in an adverse employment action, or it is sufficiently egregious or happens often enough to create an intimidating work environment, it is unlawful. You may be wondering how to file a sexual harassment claim. At Phillips & Associates, our New York City sexual harassment lawyers can help you navigate the legal process. Watch the video on this page to find out more.

How Do I File a Sexual Harassment Claim?

When you believe that you may have been sexually harassed, you should create contemporaneous documentation about the harassment. Later, this may prove to be important evidence in a charge or lawsuit. You should quote the harasser in your documentation if they said something harassing, and you should write down the date and where the harassment happened.

If an employee sexually harasses you while in a public place, rather than your own workplace, you should contact the employee's manager. You should get the manager's name and contact information, and after speaking to them, you should contact the corporation. However, if someone sexually harasses you at your work, or you saw a fellow worker being sexually harassed, the first thing that you should do is look at your employee handbook, assuming that you have a handbook. It may include internal grievance procedures or guidelines related to complaining about sexual harassment. You should follow whichever procedure is specified.

You should also send an email or letter to Human Resources in a trackable form. For example, you might send a letter via certified mail. In most cases, HR will set up an appointment or meeting to discuss the incident. To this meeting, you should bring any documentation that supports your claim. For example, if your coworker sent you pornographic emails, you should print all of these out and bring them to the meeting. If you have created contemporaneous documentation about what happened to you, you should bring it.

Once you send an email or launch an internal grievance, you should give your employer about two weeks to get back to you about where it is with its investigation. If you do not hear from it within two weeks, you should follow up. However, if it does not respond or does not respond appropriately, you may need to escalate your complaint to a higher department or contact an attorney to determine whether Title VII or state law will provide greater recourse in your case.

Title VII is the federal law that prohibits sexual harassment, and it requires you to file a charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) before bringing suit. Although you may file a charge yourself, it may be helpful to have representation by an experienced attorney. In some cases, the EEOC will investigate, while in other cases, it will refer a case to mediation. Many of the laws enforced by the EEOC, including Title VII, only apply to companies with 15 or more employees. For many workers, greater protection is offered by state laws. An experienced lawyer can evaluate your claim and determine which is the appropriate option in your case.

Consult a Sexual Harassment Attorney in New York City

Filing a sexual harassment claim may be embarrassing and difficult. At Phillips & Associates, our New York City lawyers have substantial experience advising clients on filing internal complaints, and we can bring either a charge or lawsuit afterward if appropriate. Contact us online or at (866) 229-9441 to set up an appointment with a discrimination attorney. We fight workplace misconduct in Staten Island, the Bronx, Queens, Brooklyn, and Manhattan, as well as Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester Counties.