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Sexual Harassment Lawyer in San Diego

When you need a sexual harassment lawyer in San Diego, turn to Gilleon Law Firm. Our team of experienced attorneys knows the devastating impact of sexual harassment and is ready to defend your rights to ensure you get the justice you deserve.

A Pervasive Problem: Sexual Harassment in California

Sexual harassment is far too common throughout the state of California. A report from UC San Diego’s Center for Gender Equity and Health reveals that a whopping 86 percent of the state’s women — and 53 percent of men — have experienced some form of sexual harassment or assault. These shocking rates are even higher for members of marginalized communities.

Sadly, no settings are completely safe from this problem, which can strike just about anywhere. It’s particularly traumatic when it takes place on the job. The workplace is one of the most common settings of sexual harassment: UC San Diego’s data suggests that half of women and 37 percent of men experience it in institutions such as workplaces.

While employees should feel comfortable and justified in reporting these incidents, they often encounter a great deal of pushback — including, in some cases, wrongful termination. Even when victims keep their jobs, they fear the loss of respect or credibility.

Seek Justice with an Experienced San Diego Sexual Harassment Lawyer by Your Side

Seeking justice is never easy, but that doesn’t make it any less crucial. This is exemplified by the Me Too movement and other efforts to shine a light on sexual harassment. These have, if nothing else, helped to deliver some semblance of emotional solace for victims. Many people have even managed to hold perpetrators accountable. Every attempt to do so matters. With enough victims stepping forward, it’s possible to send a clear message: Californians won’t put up with sexual harassment.

It’s understandable if the thought of taking legal action is overwhelming, but that doesn’t mean you’re in this alone. A sexual harassment lawyer in San Diego can provide the compassionate guidance you need during this difficult time. First, however, it’s important to understand what sexual harassment is, why it’s such a significant problem, and how an empathetic attorney from the Gilleon Law Firm can help.

Why Empathy Is Crucial When Working with a Sexual Harassment Lawyer

It’s rarely easy to navigate California’s legal system, but sexual harassment cases add yet another layer of complexity. In addition to dealing with the natural nerves of filing a lawsuit, you may experience a variety of difficult emotions as you relive the incident that caused you to file in the first place. This process is painful, but you can get through it with an empathetic sexual harassment attorney by your side.

Your sexual harassment lawyer needs to strike a careful balance between encouraging you to speak out while also respecting your need for compassion and privacy. This means showing kindness and patience during consultations, contrasted by a more aggressive approach both in and out of court.

A strong attorney-client relationship is crucial, but it takes skill and effort to develop. First, your lawyer needs to discover your goals for your sexual harassment lawsuit, as well as the legal approach that best fits your unique needs and personality. This can look considerably different from one client to the next. 

Strong listening skills are important, but your attorney should also strive to educate you on the ins and outs of the legal system. At times, this means giving you the tough facts about bringing a sexual harassment lawsuit. Armed with this knowledge and plenty of emotional support, you’ll feel confident in moving forward with your case.

The California employment law attorneys of the Gilleon Law Firm possess all of the qualities required for securing a successful outcome in your sexual harassment claim.

What Is Sexual Harassment? Why Do You Need an Attorney Skilled in This Area?

Before you make an effort to hold perpetrators accountable, it helps to know what, exactly, sexual harassment is. Many victims fail to step forward simply because they don’t understand the concept. In reality, it encompasses a vast array of behaviors, all of which are discriminatory in nature. 

Defining sexual harassment as it occurs in the workplace, the State of California’s Department of Justice references two main forms.

Hostile Work Environment

This version of sexual harassment involves offensive and unwanted conduct that creates an unwelcome workplace. In this type of setting, employees feel intimidated to the point that they cannot function as they would under ordinary circumstances. A hostile environment prevents employees from feeling safe, secure, or welcome.

Quid Pro Quo

The term ‘quid pro quo’ translates to ‘this for that.’ When applied to sexual harassment, it refers to the problematic link between job benefits and unwanted advances. Similarly, behavior may be referred to as quid pro quo when threats are tied to the refusal to put up with lewd behavior or to perform sexual favors. Sadly, while employees should be able to move up the career ladder based on job performance, quid pro quo creates an unhealthy power dynamic that should be unacceptable in the modern workforce.

Our Attorneys Handle Cases for All Types of Sexual Harassment

The Department of Justice adds that, to qualify as sexual harassment, the “offensive conduct need not be motivated by sexual desire.” It can, however, be based on the employee’s sex, gender, or sexuality identity — or the perpetrator’s perception of these factors. Sexual harassment may also be based on concerns such as pregnancy, childbirth, or other related medical conditions.

You have the fundamental right to work in a safe environment that is free of discriminatory behavior. If this right is not upheld, it’s in your best interest to seek accountability through the legal system. While any attorney can technically help you with this pursuit, you’ll find the process easier to navigate if you work with someone who has a strong track record as a California sexual harassment lawyer. 

Your representative should understand sexual harassment as it’s defined in California, as well as available legal remedies. Don’t discount the importance of working with a lawyer who is qualified and highly skilled in this practice area. Attorney selection could make or break your case.

Examples of Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

Sexual harassment can take many forms. Unfortunately, potential clients often fail to recognize that they have a viable case on their hands. If you so much as suspect that sexual harassment could be at play, it’s important to seek clarification from a California sexual harassment attorney.

Remember: in the workplace, sexual harassment can involve both visual and verbal elements, as well as unwanted physical contact. Often, behaviors that seem minor or even normal qualify, even though our society has unfortunately normalized such conduct.

Has This Happened to You?

You May Need a Sexual Harassment Lawyer

If any of the following situations seem familiar, consider consulting with our sexual harassment lawyer in San Diego. We have the experience necessary to gather proof for a sexual harassment lawsuit.

  • Promising a raise or promotion in exchange for an employee’s going out on a date
  • Threatening to fire an employee who refuses to engage in lewd acts
  • Asking intrusive questions about an employee’s romantic life or sexual preferences
  • Using decor of a sexual nature, such as inappropriate posters or suggestive cartoon images
  • Targeting categories that are protected by the Equal Opportunity Commission when making offensive jokes
  • Making obscene jokes or using sexually derogatory terms
  • Giving a colleague an unwanted hug or shoulder rub.

When a Perpetrator Doesn’t Think It’s Sexual Harassment

California residents remain confused about sexual harassment, partly because it can involve such a wide array of behaviors. Some — such as unwanted touching — are widely regarded as inappropriate. With certain jokes or perceived compliments, however, workers or supervisors may assume that their intentions are harmless or even positive. Regardless of their awareness (or lack thereof), it’s important to hold these individuals accountable.

In general, sexual harassment goes beyond rude or inappropriate behavior, which, while problematic, does not necessarily qualify as creating a hostile environment in a legal sense. With sexual harassment, improper conduct becomes discriminatory in nature, often to the extent that it damages the victim’s job performance. 

What Types of Damages Are Available in California Sexual Harassment Cases?

As the victim of sexual harassment, you’ve experienced unwarranted emotional suffering. In all likelihood, you’ve also sustained significant financial losses. If you file a sexual harassment lawsuit, you may be able to obtain damages to account for all of this. Common sources of compensation in San Diego sexual harassment lawsuits include:

  • Backpay, benefits, or other financial damages. These may be sought for everything from unfair firings to the failure to promote qualified employees.
  • Future earnings. In some cases, employers are required to reinstate employees who were wrongfully terminated. If this does not occur, financial damages may include future pay that the harmed employee would have realistically earned.
  • Pain and suffering. Even if you did not directly sustain any financial losses after being subjected to sexual harassment, you deserve recognition for the emotional distress that your experience prompted.
  • Attorney fees and litigation expenses. There’s no need to worry about the cost of filing a sexual harassment lawsuit, as perpetrators are often required to cover expenses tied to litigation.
  • Punitive damages. Although not as common as the types of compensation outlined above, punitive damages can sometimes be awarded in California sexual harassment lawsuits. As the name suggests, this type of compensation is meant to directly punish the employer. It’s generally reserved for the most egregious or malicious acts. With an aggressive San Diego sexual harassment lawyer on your side, you may be able to obtain significant punitive damages.

In addition to these forms of compensation, other remedies may be available. These differ from one case to the next but may address the problems that led you to file a lawsuit in the first place. For example, some sexual harassment cases lead to mandated policy changes for employers who have previously failed to address workplace hostility. Such solutions allow you to have a lasting impact on the California workplace. While your ability to secure compensation is important, the value of enacting such changes should not be discounted as you weigh your options.

Steps to Take After Suffering Sexual Harassment

If you suspect you’ve suffered sexual harassment as it’s defined above or believe that you may be able to obtain compensation, don’t let fear dominate your response. This is the time to take action. 

First, take a moment to record what happened. Note the circumstances surrounding the situation. Who was involved? Where did it occur? Were any witnesses present? This information could prove critical if you pursue administrative action or file a lawsuit with help from a sexual harassment attorney in San Diego. 

Next, get in touch with an attorney you trust. As you determine next steps, your lawyer can help you figure out if you’ve suffered sexual harassment — and what you can do about it.

How the Sexual Harassment Attorneys at the Gilleon Law Firm Can Help

If you believe that you’ve been subjected to sexual harassment in San Diego, don’t hesitate to seek help. It can be difficult to take that first step — but once you do, you’ll be amazed by the sense of relief you gain. This could quickly be accompanied by the newfound confidence that a strong legal resource delivers. What does it take to get started? A consultation with a sexual harassment lawyer in San Diego.

At the Gilleon Law Firm, we are committed to delivering justice. We accomplish this by acting as loyal advocates for our clients, many of whom have been treated horribly by their coworkers and supervisors. We’re disappointed by the prevalence of sexual harassment throughout California, but we believe that change is possible. We work hard to deliver these much-needed changes by empowering the victims of sexual harassment. 

With our exceptionally skilled attorneys in your corner, you can send a powerful message: sexual harassment will not be tolerated. Your bravery could play a crucial role in transforming the modern workforce. Whether your efforts result in a strengthened harassment policy or simply increased awareness, they’ll prove worthwhile if they produce change.

We Can Help You Win Justice and Monetary Damages

In addition to delivering justice, your work with our attorneys could lead to monetary damages that reflect not only your professional losses, but also any emotional distress you’ve experienced as a result. You deserve to be compensated for your suffering — and at the Gilleon Law Firm, we can make it happen. We boast an impressive case history in this specific area of employment law. We’ve helped many clients recover the damages they deserve — and we’re ready to apply all that we’ve learned along the way as we fight for you.

If you’re ready to move forward with your sexual harassment lawsuit or other employment law case, don’t hesitate to reach out. We’d love to discuss your legal concerns and get you on the right track. Call 619-702-8623 today or contact the Gilleon Law Firm online to schedule your complimentary consultation.