News & Analysis as of

Hostile Environment

Fourth Circuit Rejects Sexual Harassment Claim by Employee Who Quit Days Into Her Investigation

Employers are not strictly liable for hostile environment sexual harassment by a victim’s co-workers. The employer may be held responsible under Title VII if it knew or should have known of the harassment and failed to take...more

You Can’t Simply Look The Other Way—New HUD/FHA Rules That Affect Your Associations

by Husch Blackwell LLP on

There are some new HUD (Housing and Urban Development) Rules that went into effect October 2016 which may have a significant impact on Condominium and Homeowners Associations, and although we very much dislike these new Rules...more

‘Me Too’ Coverage Implications For Employers

by Carlton Fields on

When an employer negligently supervises an employee who commits separate acts of sexual harassment against three different co-workers on separate occasions, how many “occurrences” are there under a standard commercial general...more

DOJ Announces Sexual Harassment Enforcement Initiative - State and Local Government Employers Face Additional Federal Scrutiny

by Holland & Knight LLP on

State and local governments – many of whom are already facing new sexual harassment regulations and enforcement actions at the state level – are now subject to additional federal scrutiny and potential enforcement pursuant to...more

Is Having an Office Romance A Good Idea?

by Jaburg Wilk on

You’re young, embarking on a career and very attracted to a co-worker who flirts with you at your new job. You’re sure the two of you were made for each other and, after all, you’re only human. So, you boost the courage to...more

Hogan Lovells: Our thoughts on sexual harassment in any workplace

by Hogan Lovells on

Sexual harassment has recently been making headlines with revelations from the USA, Europe and parts of Asia. This is a scourge in the modern workplace and deserves attention in being routed out. Please see full...more

Ignorance Is Not Bliss: It’s Time To Enact A Meaningful Sexual Harassment Policy

by Fox Rothschild LLP on

Each day more and more women come forward to share their stories of abuse within the workplace and without. And people are actually listening. In the not-so-distant past, the primary concern for some employers may have...more

Company Culture, #MeToo and Anti-Harassment Programs

by Michael Volkov on

Companies do not operate in a vacuum. As we know, companies are part of our social fabric and are subject to the same influences as our communities, politics and families....more

Attorneys General Seek to Ban Mandatory Arbitration for Workplace Sexual Harassment

by Ballard Spahr LLP on

Each state's attorney general has signed a letter demanding that Congress amend the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) to prohibit mandatory arbitration provisions in claims involving workplace sexual harassment. ...more

Why Can’t We Be Friends: Would Lyle Case Decision Be Same Today?

by FordHarrison on

What if I told you that the California Supreme Court has ruled that under certain circumstances, an employee being exposed to lewd conduct in the workplace – including sexual discussions, sexually explicit pictures, and...more

Investigating Claims of Harassment: A Step-by-Step “How To” Part 6: Closing the Investigation and Additional Steps Thereafter

by Bryan Cave on

This final installment of a six-part series on harassment investigations discusses how to close the investigation and steps to take after the investigation has been closed. As always, bear in mind that each harassment...more

Legal Perspective: Fighting harassment in the workplace

by GableGotwals on

Since the Supreme Court’s 1998 landmark decisions in Burlington Industries v. Ellerth and Faragher v. City of Boca Raton, employment lawyers and human resources professionals have spent the last 20 years preaching no...more

The “N-word,” the “Black Monkey Girl,” and the “Confident, African American Male”: Workplace Language and Hostile Environment...

by Dorsey & Whitney LLP on

It is one of the nightmare scenarios for any HR Department or in-house employment counsel: A white employee directing crude, vicious, racially charged slurs at an African-American employee. Perhaps the most inflammatory of...more

Dear Littler: Can I Immediately Fire a VP Based on Sexual Harassment Allegations?

by Littler on

Dear Littler: I am a senior HR manager at a mid-sized company. One of our female team members just reported her manager, a vice president, for inappropriate conduct. She claims that what started out as mild flirtation on his...more

Be My Valentine! – BUT First Please Review and Sign Below

by FordHarrison on

Executive Summary: This Valentine’s Day, employers across industries were reevaluating their workplace dating and sexual harassment policies. Various surveys show that 40 percent of workers date or have dated co-workers. ...more

Sexual Harassment Victims: Why Don’t They Speak Up?

by LeClairRyan on

The news is flooded with reports of sexual harassment and victims finally coming forward after decades, for some, of silence. Why? Having cut my teeth on sexual harassment laws and regulations since the early 1980s and...more

Back Pay Burden-New Trial Ordered Where Jury Slashed Plaintiff’s Request For Back Pay

by Seyfarth Shaw LLP on

Seyfarth Synopsis: The Sixth Circuit ordered a new trial in a Title VII case where plaintiff presented evidence he was entitled to back pay, the employer presented no evidence to the contrary, and the jury only awarded a...more

Confidential Harassment Settlements No Longer Subject To Tax Deduction

by Pepper Hamilton LLP on

Q.  Has the #MeToo Movement led to any changes on how companies settle harassment complaints? A.  While there are numerous legislative initiatives on the horizon intended to change how employers handle harassment...more

Texts From Your Ex? Not So Fast- Make Sure To Preserve Your Evidence

by Seyfarth Shaw LLP on

Seyfarth Synopsis: A case out of the District of Oregon recently dismissed a Plaintiff’s sexual harassment and retaliation claims where the allegations relied on manufactured text messages that Plaintiff failed to produce. ...more

New Lawsuit Alleges Rush to Judgment in #MeToo Climate

Newton’s Third Law of Physics states that “for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.” A recent Complaint filed in the Southern District of New York suggests that this principle may also hold true for the...more

Fourth Circuit Raises Bar for Dismissal of Sexual Harassment Claims

Through the 2000s, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals (which includes North Carolina and South Carolina) had the reputation as one of the most employer-friendly U.S. appellate courts. As new judges took to the bench over the...more

Employment Matters – UK, Featuring Topics on Sexual Harassment, Surveillance, Perceived Disability and Injury to Feelings Claims

It's Just Banter, Right? Living in this 'post Weinstein' world, the recent President's Club scandal has sparked efforts to bring the law in England and Wales into line with #metoo movement. Please see full Newsletter...more

Cal/OSHA Drafts Rules For Workplace Violence Prevention In General Industry

by Seyfarth Shaw LLP on

Seyfarth Synopsis: The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH) recently held an advisory meeting on the Agency’s draft rules for Workplace Violence Prevention in General Industry. It is seeking public...more

Been Harassed? Vote Yes. How Unions Are Leveraging #MeToo To Organize Female Workers

by Seyfarth Shaw LLP on

Seyfarth Synopsis: Union organizers are increasingly embracing the #MeToo movement as an organizing tool, claiming that unions are the key to eliminating gender inequity and sexual harassment in the workplace....more

How Should Employers Respond to #MeToo?

by Cozen O'Connor on

The #MeToo movement started as a wave of press coverage exposing long-suppressed stories of sexual harassment and exploitation in Hollywood. That movement, however, has now gone far beyond Harvey Weinstein. ...more

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