Employers in West Virginia can be held accountable for sexual harassment incidents when they involve employees or even non-employees. According to West Virginia Legislative Rule § 77-4-1, employers can be held accountable for acts of sexual harassment committed by non-employees when “the employer or supervisory employees knew or should have reasonably known of the conduct and failed to take timely and appropriate corrective action.” This means if a customer, client, or even a vendor commits sexual harassment at an employer’s place of employment, they could potentially be held liable for it.
Examples of Sexual Harassment
Below are a few examples of the types of behavior that would be considered forms of sexual harassment:
- An overly friendly customer who engages in unwelcome touching.
- A vendor who discusses his/her sexual life with employees or tries to show them sexually explicit photos.
- A client who requests sexual favors from an employee in exchange for giving them more business.
- A customer who constantly makes sexual advances toward an employee each time they come in.
While the examples mentioned above only reflect a few of the types of behaviors that would constitute as sexual harassment, it is important for employees to understand that sexual harassment can occur in many different ways and can also involve anyone in the workplace.
How can an employee hold an employer liable for sexual harassment that is committed by a non-employee?
Many employees are often unclear as to what steps they need to take to hold an employer liable for sexual harassment that occurs in the workplace. It is for this reason and many others why some employees choose not to come forward with their concerns. But the truth is, there are many different ways an employee can go about recognizing an employer for sexual harassment they allowed or should have known was occurring in their workplace.
And if one method doesn’t work, an employee can try another until they are successful at recognizing their employer for the harassment they were subjected to.
Ways to Hold an Employer Liable for Sexual Harassment in West Virginia
- Report the employer to their human resources (HR) department.
- Notify a manager of the issue and follow the procedures the company has for reporting sexual harassment.
- File a complaint with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).
- File a formal complaint with the West Virginia Civil Rights Division of the Bureau of Labor.
- Hire a West Virginia sexual harassment lawyer.
Although it may not always be necessary for an employee to hire a WV sexual harassment attorney, there are times when it can benefit them to do so. To find out how a sexual harassment lawyer in WV can help an employee hold their employer liable for harassment and possibly recover compensation for the physical or financial suffering they experienced, contact USAttorneys.com. USAttorneys helps individuals find and retain lawyers in any city in WV including Charleston, Huntington, and Parkersburg.