Sexual harassment offenses encompass a wide range of physical and non-physical actions. If someone is harassing you based on your sex, you can file a suit in Virginia’s justice system through the help of an experienced attorney.
Sexual harassment can include:
- Any physical or verbal harassment of a sexual nature
- Requesting for sexual favors
- Inappropriate touching
- Passing around inappropriate letters or emails
- Unsolicited sexual advances
- Offering opinions that degenerate one sex
Infrequent offhand comments, while they may not be comfortable or appropriate, can be legal. However, when the comments become so frequent such that they create an offensive or hostile work environment, or they affect an employment decision, they can fall under harassment.
If a co-worker is sexually harassing you in a workplace located in Arlington, Virginia, you should consult a sexual harassment law firm. An attorney will walk you through the legal process to ensure your best interests are considered. HKM Employment Attorneys LLP handles sexual harassment cases from clients across Northern Virginia, including Alexandria, McLean, Arlington County, Fairfax County, and the District of Columbia.
What to Do When Sexually Harassed at the Workplace
If you suspect that you are being subjected to sexual harassment, there are a number of things you can do:
- Check whether there is a procedure for reporting sexual harassment in your company. The information may be on your company employee portal. The HR department will also have the information.
- If there is a procedure for reporting sexual harassment at your workplace, follow it, even if it will probably not lead to any outcome. Federal law requires any aggrieved person to follow their workplace procedures for reporting sexual harassment.
- Contact a Virginia sexual harassment attorney. Sexual harassment cases are quite complicated, and you’ll need an employment lawyer trained in Virginia employment discrimination.
Filing a Sexual Harassment Complaint
The Virginia Human Rights Act criminalizes all forms of harassment or discrimination based on sex. In addition to federal legislation on sexual harassment, the VHRA is enforceable through Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which is under the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The agency is mandated to investigate all sexual harassment claims at the workplace.
However, to have a valid case, you need to file a complaint within 180 days of the harassment happening. Otherwise, the EEOC may decline to investigate your claim.
Consult a Virginia Workplace Sexual Harassment Attorney
No employee should have to endure any sexual harassment at the workplace. A Virginia sexual harassment lawyer will help to protect your rights to ensure you can perform your duties in a safe and conducive environment. Get in touch with an experienced lawyer at HKM Employment Attorneys for legal advice. Our law offices can schedule a free consultation for you to scope out your options.