Skip to main content

How do I know if I have a sexual harassment claim in California?

Sponsored Answer
Geoffrey C. Lyon - Employment Litigation - Super Lawyers

Answered by: Geoffrey C. Lyon

Located in Long Beach, CALyon Law PC

Phone: 888-900-4102
Fax: 888-239-2462

View Profile

As a general guideline, if you are experiencing things at work that make you feel sexually uncomfortable or unsafe, it is entirely possible that you have a harassment claim. However, there are some limits and nuances that are important to understand.

Signs Of Sexual Harassment

You might have a sexual harassment claim if you have been subjected to:

  • Unwanted touching
  • Unwanted sexual remarks
  • Persistent requests to socialize or engage in sexual activity after you have refused
  • Pornographic or sexual images at work
  • Sexual jokes or innuendos

These instances can be considered harassment whether they occur in person or by way of digital communications like email, instant message or text.

If you have been subject to a sexually hostile work environment or if a manager or supervisor has offered to exchange work benefits for sexual favors, you could have a strong legal case of sexual harassment.

Who Is Liable?

One of the common questions we get involves liability. If, for example, the person committing the actions that constitute sexual harassment is not a boss or a supervisor, would it still be a case of sexual harassment?

The short answer is “yes,” but there are some nuances to this. First, for the employer to be liable for sexual harassment, either a supervisor or manager had to have committed the actions or the supervisor had to have known about the harassment but then did nothing to stop it.

However, a co-worker can be liable for sexual harassment even if the employer cannot be brought into the case.

What If You Are Not The Direct Target Of Harassment?

A common situation arises when someone is made uncomfortable at work, but they are not the target. If, for example, you are privy to a supervisor or co-worker harassing the person in the adjoining cube next to you and it creates an uncomfortable working environment for you, you could have a claim.

The First Steps

If you think you might have a sexual harassment claim, it is important to proceed strategically and carefully. The first step is to contact an attorney to determine whether you have a viable claim. An experienced lawyer can help you understand your rights and options.

Other Answers By Geoffrey C. Lyon

Photo of Geoffrey C. Lyon

I was fired in California. How do I know if it was discrimination?

Being fired as a result of discrimination is a form of wrongful termination. Of course, employers are allowed to …

Sponsored answer by Geoffrey C. Lyon

Photo of Geoffrey C. Lyon

If I didn’t get a promotion, can I sue for discrimination in California?

The answer to this question depends largely on the facts of your case.In general, employers have the right to make …

Sponsored answer by Geoffrey C. Lyon

Photo of Geoffrey C. Lyon

How do I know if I have an employment law case in California?

This is a high-level question that involves a few categories of employment law, including wrongful termination, …

Sponsored answer by Geoffrey C. Lyon

Other Answers About Sexual Harassment

Photo of Ron Makarem

How do I know if I have been a victim of sexual harassment in California?

No one should be made to feel uncomfortable or unsafe at the workplace because of someone else’s …

Sponsored answer by Ron Makarem

Photo of Brian D. Spitz

What should I do if I am being sexually harassed at work in Ohio?

Sexual harassment is still a significant problem in the United States with more than a third of women reporting …

Sponsored answer by Brian D. Spitz

Photo of Daniel L. Feder

What Is Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment In California?

Employers have a responsibility to provide their workers with a safe, hostility-free environment. Unfortunately, …

Sponsored answer by Daniel L. Feder

Call Me

To: Geoffrey C. Lyon

Super Lawyers: Potential Client Inquiry

Required fields are marked with an asterisk (*).


The information contained in this web site is intended to convey general information. It should not be construed as legal advice or opinion. It is not an offer to represent you, nor is it intended to create an attorney-client relationship. The use of the internet or this contact form for communication is not necessarily a secure environment. Contacting a lawyer or law firm email through this service will not create an attorney-client relationship, and information will not necessarily be treated as privileged or confidential.

Page Generated: 1.38285779953 sec