California Financial Planner Sexual Harassment Lawyer
Sexual harassment pervades every industry and field, and finance is no exception. As a financial planner, you may be in business with people much higher up in the field than you are. It may shock you to find that the norm is for major players in the industry to sexually harass those in lower positions. You may also have to deal with clients one on one, sometimes communicating via text message or meeting privately in person. This can put you at risk of the lines being blurred and your client asking you on dates or otherwise sexually harassing you.
If you are a survivor of a traumatic financial planner sexual harassment experience, contact the lawyers of Manly, Stewart & Finaldi for assistance. Our legal team will help you go up against your employer or the institution that allowed the sexual harassment to take place. We offer free, confidential consultations to potential clients, where you can receive a case review from one of our attorneys, not a paralegal or assistant. Call (855) 934-0468 today.
Why Does Financial Planner Sexual Harassment Happen?
Learning how to recognize sexual harassment in your field as a financial planner can help you protect yourself and get help. There are two different types of workplace sexual harassment: hostile work environment and quid pro quo. A hostile work environment means that you don’t feel safe or productive in your workplace due to an aggressive, intimidating, threatening or unsafe environment. Quid pro quo means “this for that,” or an offer to give you something in exchange for sexual favors.
In general, the issues that you are experiencing at work as a financial planner must be consistent over a period of time to constitute sexual harassment. You may not have grounds to file a sexual harassment claim if an incident only occurred once unless it was severe. You always have the right, however, to speak up at work and let your employer know that you feel targeted by a manager or coworker. Your employer should have solutions in place to prevent harassment and promptly respond to complaints, such as punishing or firing the perpetrator.
Workplace sexual harassment against a financial planner can come in the form of crude jokes, sexual hazing, requests for sexual favors, inappropriate remarks or unwanted sexual attention by an employer, coworker, client or others in the workplace. Our lawyers at Manly, Stewart & Finaldi can help you file a sexual harassment lawsuit in California as a survivor of any type of sexual harassment in the financial planning industry.
Your Rights in the Workplace as a Financial Planner in California
All employers in California must abide by several state and federal laws to keep their employees safe. This includes the Fair Employment and Housing Act, which has requirements for employers regarding sexual harassment training, reporting, education and prevention. In the financial industry, there should be protocols in place to prevent sexual harassment and discrimination at all stages of employment, from the application and interview processes to meetings with clients.
If you suffered sexual harassment at work as a financial planner in California, you have a right to hold your employer responsible for its part in failing to keep you safe. Most sexual harassment cases are resolved after the employee files a complaint with their employer through internal actions, such as penalties against the perpetrator. If your employer does not properly respond to your complaint, however, the company can face civil liability for your losses through a lawsuit filed by you or your lawyer.
How to File a Sexual Harassment Claim in California
If you have suffered sexual harassment as a financial planner or advisor in California, you could be facing medical bills, emotional distress, lost wages and other negative effects from the harassment. Take the following steps to take back your life:
- Tell your employer. Report your experience, along with details such as the name of the harasser and when and where each incident occurred, to human resources.
- Document everything. Keep a journal where you document each incident of sexual harassment, along with the names of people who were in the room when it happened.
- File a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). If your employer does not resolve the issue internally, go to the EEOC to request an investigation.
- Bring a lawsuit. If the EEOC gives you notice of the right to sue, you can file a lawsuit against your employer for your sexual harassment experience as a financial planner in pursuit of financial damages.
At this stage, if you have not already, contact a sexual harassment lawyer near you for advice and assistance with the claims process. A lawyer can help you demand justice for financial planner sexual harassment.
When the Financial Planner Is the Harasser
You may also be seeking legal counsel because you experienced sexual harassment by your financial planner as a client. Financial planners are important to the financial futures of the clients that they represent. Financial planners have the knowledge and understanding of the finance field to help their clients know what to invest in and when. Unfortunately, this relationship can put the client at risk of being taken advantage of by the financial planner, who plays an important role in the client’s life and has a position of authority.
Many examples of sexual harassment stem from an imbalance of power between the perpetrator and the victim. A financial planner has the power to significantly help or hurt a client’s finances. Although financial planners are legally and ethically bound to protect a client’s best interests, a planner who is willing to sexually harass or assault a victim will not play by these rules. This can lead to the financial planner engaging in sexual harassment or discriminatory behaviors against a client.
If you need to hire a financial planner or another type of investment advisor in California, perform due diligence. Research the financial professional thoroughly before signing anything. Look for red flags that could point to a fraudulent or criminal enterprise, such as suspicious communications. This could be a warning sign that the financial planner is not authentic, that you could be dealing with fraud, or that you may be at risk of sexual harassment or abuse.
Contact a California Financial Planner Sexual Harassment Lawyer Today
If you are a victim of sexual harassment, either as a financial planner or as a client of one, contact our attorneys for advice right away. The legal team at Manly, Stewart & Finaldi offers free initial consultations where you can speak with an attorney and receive sound legal advice as to what to do next. We are passionate in our pursuit of justice on behalf of sexual harassment victims in financial planning. Contact us today to learn more.