Orange County Sexual Harassment Attorney
Sexual harassment is a serious crime that plagues schools, workplaces, churches, and the internet. It is a pervasive issue that can ruin lives. At Manly, Stewart & Finaldi, we stand up for the rights of those who have suffered sexual harassment or discrimination in Orange County. If you or a loved one experienced sexual harassment to a degree that caused you harm, such as the loss of your job or significant pain and suffering, contact us for a free consultation with a compassionate Orange County sexual harassment attorney.
Orange County Sexual Harassment Resources
- Why Choose Manly, Stewart & Finaldi for Your Sexual Harassment Case?
- Do I Need a Lawyer for Sexual Harassment?
- What Is Sexual Harassment?
- Who Can Commit Sexual Harassment?
- Who Can Be Held Liable for Sexual Harassment?
- How Much Is My Sexual Harassment Case Worth?
- Time Limits for Filing a Sexual Harassment Claim
- Do You Have a Sexual Harassment Case?
- Contact an Orange County Sexual Harassment Attorney Today
Why Trust Manly, Stewart & Finaldi With Your Sexual Harassment Case?
- We have significant experience. Our founding lawyer, John C. Manly, has over 20 years of experience. We are the top firm in the country for representing survivors of sexual assault and abuse.
- We get results. Our Orange County sexual harassment lawyers are not afraid of going up against major institutions on behalf of clients. We can strengthen your voice against major institutions and powerful defendants.
- We prioritize client care. Our lawyers work day and night to understand cases, gather evidence and see that the client has everything he or she needs. You will be our top priority as a sexual harassment client in OC.
How an Orange County Sexual Harassment Lawyer Can Help
Surviving sexual harassment could leave you with many questions. Our sexual abuse lawyers in Orange County will start there with your representation. Contact us day or night to ask your most pressing questions about sexual harassment in Orange County, such as your rights and who could be liable. We can listen to your story and give you honest answers. It is our goal to help you feel heard, seen, and supported. We can protect your identity throughout the claims process.
- Identify the at-fault party. You may know the identity of your perpetrator, but you could also have a case against an institution. If your coworker sexually harassed you, for example, the company you work for may be vicariously liable.
- File legal paperwork. Our lawyers and associates can take care of stacks of confusing paperwork on your behalf. We can fill out your initial claim form, handle insurance negotiations and file an injury lawsuit by the state’s deadline.
- Pursue maximum compensation. It is our mission to secure top compensation awards for each client. We do this through aggressive and personalized legal strategies, proven tactics, strong settlement negotiations, and trial efforts.
Throughout your claim, we will do everything we can to guide you from step to step. Our Orange County sexual harassment attorneys will handle the complex parts of your case while you focus on rebuilding and moving forward. We take your privacy extremely seriously and will use the utmost standards of confidentiality during your case if desired.
What Constitutes Sexual Harassment?
Sexual harassment can describe any unwelcome advances, contact, behaviors, requests, or gestures of a sexual nature. Harassment could be either physical or verbal, typically in the workplace or a school setting. The definition of sexual harassment is broad and can refer to various types of unwanted sexual conduct. Sexual harassment is a civil rights violation and may also break the law.
- Requests for sexual favors
- This for that (quid pro quo)
- Threats or intimidation
- Unwanted touching
- Invasion of personal space
- Sexual jokes, slurs, epithets or comments
- Discussing one’s appearance using sexual terms
- Discussing sexual topics at work
- Sending unsolicited messages or images containing sexual content
- Sexual facial expressions or hand gestures
- Spreading rumors of a sexual nature
- Creating a hostile work environment
Sexual harassment can remain a civil rights infraction alone, or it could cross the line into illegal activity. Some cases escalate to the level of sex crimes, including sexual abuse, rape or attempted rape. In both scenarios, the survivor will have legal rights and options and should consider speaking with a sexual harassment attorney in Orange County. Most people do not realize that sexual harassment could also be consensual. Consensual sexual acts or comments could still constitute harassment if company policy prohibits relationships between employees and employers.
Who Can Commit Sexual Harassment?
Anyone is capable of committing sexual harassment. Most people think of harassment as something between a boss and his or her subordinates, but sexual harassment could occur among anyone a workplace or school setting. The harasser and harassed can identify with any gender and have any relationship with one another. The identify of harasser could be a supervisor, CEO, manager, coworker, contractor, vendor, company owner, customer, peer, professor or colleague.
It is a common misconception that sexual harassment can only exist between a male harasser and a female victim. Both men and women can become victims of sexual harassment in Orange County. The harasser could be the same sex or opposite sex of the victim. If you are unsure whether your experience meets the legal definition of sexual harassment, contact a qualified Orange County sexual harassment attorney to request a confidential free consultation. A lawyer can review the details of your case and let you know if you have a claim to damages. If the scenario meets the definition of sexual harassment, you may have the right to bring a lawsuit against the liable party or parties.
Who Is Liable for Sexual Harassment?
The party liable, or legally responsible, for your sexual harassment depends on the identity of the person doing the harassing. In general, if sexual harassment occurs at work, the company will be vicariously liable for the actions and misconduct of its employees. If a supervisor sexually harassed you, for example, you could bring a claim against the company under the rules of vicarious liability, rather than only holding the individual supervisor responsible. A claim against your employer may end in better compensation since a company will have more insurance than an individual.
The company you work for could also be directly liable for sexual harassment if it contributed to the issue through negligence such as failing to uphold state and federal sexual harassment laws, failing to properly train workers, failing to implement an anti-sexual harassment policy, ignoring sexual harassment complaints, or otherwise increasing the risk of sexual harassment or abuse occurring in the workplace. If the company did something or failed to do something that you believe contributed to sexual harassment at work, the company could be liable.
If the person who sexually harassed you is not an employee of the company, the third party could be independently liable for your damages. If it was an independent contractor or customer, for example, you may be able to hold the individual liable, but not the company you work for (unless the company also contributed to the incident). The only exception is if you or your lawyer can prove your employer knew about the harassment and failed to take appropriate, prompt corrective action, such as terminating the contractor’s business relationship or reassigning you.
The level of control your employer had over the situation can determine whether you can hold the company liable for sexual harassment. If your employer had the power to remedy the issue but negligently failed to do so, you may have a lawsuit against the company. If, however, the harassment you faced was out of your employer’s control, you may only be able to bring a sexual harassment claim against the individual harasser. Speak to the Orange County sexual harassment attorneys at Manly, Stewart & Finaldi for more information about who may be liable in your specific case.
Compensation for Sexual Harassment Victims in California
You do not necessarily have to be an employee of the company to have grounds for a sexual harassment suit. You may be able to file a sexual harassment lawsuit as a customer, student, job applicant, employee, volunteer, contractor or unpaid intern. If you do have the elements of a sexual harassment claim, you could be eligible to receive financial compensation from the liable party. The harasser, your employer and/or another party could owe you compensation for several different damages according to California’s civil justice laws.
- Lost productivity and/or wages. If sexual harassment interfered with your ability to be productive at work, you may qualify for an award to cover the income you lost. This could include compensation for missed promotions, raises and special projects due to harassment, as well as lost wages from taking days off work because of a hostile work environment.
- Back pay. If sexual harassment led to wrongful termination or forced you to quit, you could be eligible for back pay. Back pay recovers your lost earnings from money you should have earned in the past but did not due to sexual harassment.
- Front pay. Front pay gives you compensation to cover a period of time in the future that is sufficient to allow you to find another job. You may qualify for front pay if job reinstatement is not an option. Otherwise, you may receive job reinstatement if sexual harassment led to wrongful termination.
- Pain and suffering. If sexual harassment resulted in physical abuse, you could seek compensation for physical pain and suffering. You could also receive an award for emotional distress, humiliation, mental anguish, loss of reputation, anxiety, fear, depression and stress.
- Legal expenses. Bringing a sexual harassment suit can incur many costs, including attorney’s fees, filing and court costs, and the money it takes to hire an expert witness. A successful lawsuit could force the defendant to pay for your legal expenses as part of your settlement or verdict.
- Punitive damages. A judge may award punitive damages in a sexual harassment case if he or she believes it is necessary to punish the defendant for his or her misconduct. Federal law limits how much you can receive in compensatory and punitive damages according to the size of the company. The limit ranges from $50,000 to $300,000 depending on the number of employees.
Discuss the potential value of your Orange County sexual harassment claim with an attorney from Manly, Stewart & Finaldi today. We can give you a one-on-one case review where we assess the details of your claim and give you an accurate estimation of its worth. Then, we can help you fill out all the required paperwork and bring your claim before California’s deadline. Our attorneys will not let you settle for less than your sexual harassment case is worth. Retain our Orange County sexual harassment lawyers for assistance with every step of your lawsuit, including negotiating for maximum compensation on your behalf.
How Much Time Do I Have to File a Sexual Harassment Claim?
If you believe you have a sexual harassment case, you do not have an unlimited amount of time in which to file. Act quickly, while important evidence remains intact. You must also act quickly to meet California’s statute of limitations. This is a strict deadline the law imposes on all sexual harassment claims. If you miss the statute of limitations, the courts will most likely refuse to hear your case, even if you have evidence of sexual harassment.
In California, you have 12 months from the date of the last sexual harassment episode to file a claim. If you wish to file a complaint first with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), you will have 180 days from the date the last harassment incident occurred. In most cases, you must file a complaint with the EEOC or the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) before you may take your case to the civil courts. You typically have three years to file with the DFEH. Once the EEOC or DFEH responds, you may either resolve your case during mediation or proceed to a trial. Work with a knowledgeable Orange County sexual harassment attorney to ensure you do not miss your deadline.
Do You Have a Sexual Harassment Case?
Sexual harassment is a wrongdoing that may give victims the right to file civil claims. Unlike a criminal case, a civil claim serves to reimburse a victim for his or her specific losses. A successful claim could result in payment for economic and noneconomic damages, including emotional distress, mental anguish, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Most civil sexual harassment claims involve four elements of proof.
- The defendant owed you a duty to exercise reasonable care.
- The defendant failed to fulfill this duty of care.
- You suffered sexual harassment because of the defendant’s breach of duty.
- The defendant’s actions caused you real, compensable damages.
An Orange County sexual harassment attorney from our firm can review the facts of your case and help you determine if you have grounds to bring a lawsuit. If so, we may offer to take your case and help you fight against negligent parties in Orange County. An individual and/or institution may owe you compensation for failing to prevent sexual harassment.
Request a Free Consultation With a Sexual Harassment Attorney in Orange County
An Orange County sexual harassment lawyer from Manly, Stewart & Finaldi can help you work through the facts of your case during a free and confidential evaluation. Call (949) 252-9990 or contact us online to schedule yours.