Houston, TX – Although sexual harassment is illegal in all workplaces in the United States, a victim still has to follow a certain set of procedures before they can file a lawsuit or take other actions against their employer. As a general rule, sexual harassment lawsuits are usually necessary only when all other internal and administrative remedies have been exhausted. However, workers can try to minimize their losses and problems by reporting the behavior and starting this process as early as possible after the illegal conduct.
Internal company procedures
A victim can first bring up their concerns to a human resources department or similar body within the company that handles allegations of misconduct. In some cases, the company may be able to resolve the harassment at this step, and not further actions will be needed. Their reaction to the formal complaint may depend on the severity of the behavior in question and the results of their own internal investigation along with remedial steps recommended by company policy. However, businesses do not always do a good job of disciplining their own workers and enforcing sexual harassment policies.
Government employment regulation agencies
Both the federal and state governments have various ways of regulating workplaces, including illegal conduct such as sexual harassment. Workers in Texas may report their situation to either the Texas Workforce Commission or Equal Employment Opportunity Commission depending on their employer. These administrative authorities have the power to investigate any claim and try to resolve it with an employer.
In cases where the government does find merit to a case and believes that it has not been adequately resolved by their procedures, the victim may receive a formal notice that they can begin the process to bring a civil sexual harassment lawsuit against their employer.
Lawsuits against the workplace
Once the worker has contacted a lawyer, they can take the documents from the employment commission and file their initial complaint. This will outline the specific incidents that caused the worker to contact their employer and take any other actions. There will also be a summary of damages and the reasons that the worker is seeking compensation from their employer. These damages often include lost pay plus interest, rehiring into the previous position, counseling or therapy if there is serious trauma, and the company may be required to make changes to training or sexual harassment policies.
Houston employment lawyers
Moore and Associates is a firm of experienced labor attorneys who handle various employment law cases in the Houston area and nearby parts of Texas. Workers who need help after issues with harassment, discrimination, or unpaid wages can contact the firm to learn more.
Firm contact info:
440 Louisiana Street, Suite 675, Houston, TX 77002