Being the victim of sexual harassment can leave lifelong scars, and seriously affect one’s wellbeing, career, and health. And on the contrary, accusations of sexual harassment can be very costly on defendants, both on their finances and their reputations. This is why if you are in some way involved with a case of sexual harassment in Utah, connecting with an attorney experienced in sexual harassment cases is imperative.
Before contacting your attorney to get your case started, here are a few things you need to know about sexual harassment lawsuits in Utah.
Utah’s laws regarding sexual harassment
Sexual harassment is prohibited both by federal and state laws. Federally, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects victims of sexual harassment, but this law has some limitations; for example, Title VII only applies to companies with 15 or more employees.
At the state level, the Utah Antidiscrimination Act, UT Code Sec. 34A-5-101 strictly prohibits sexual harassment in the workplace. The Act works against any kind of discrimination relating to gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, or other similar factors. Sexual harassment falls under this umbrella and makes up a great number of cases that cite this law.
The process of your sexual harassment lawsuit
Navigating Utah’s legal system, and knowing which law to cite in your lawsuit can be confusing, which is why it’s important to have a seasoned attorney walk you through everything. In general, for a victim to file a sexual harassment lawsuit at the state level, they must file a claim with the Utah Antidiscrimination and Labor Division (UALD) within 180 days of experiencing the last incident of sexual harassment. At the federal level, victims must file a claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) within 300 days. Your attorney can advise which body to file claims through and how to do so.
Defining sexual harassment in Utah
Some examples of what could be considered sexual harassment are:
- Unwanted sexual advances, which could be anything from touching, patting, or an explicit for of rape or assault
- Stalking; constant phone calls, texts, emails, waiting for someone at their car at the end of the day, showing up at their house
- Rude or lewd comments that demean or violate one’s dignity
Some of the more common types of sexual harassment cases are ‘quid-pro-quo’ scenarios where an employer or high ranking employee attempts to offer a tangible job benefit like a promotion or pay raise in exchange for sexual favors.
Some things that wouldn’t be considered sexual harassment are:
- Asking someone on a date
- Suggestive eye contact that makes one uncomfortable
- Consensual dates, or relationships
Are you involved with a sexual harassment case in Utah?
If you’re dealing with a possible sexual harassment lawsuit in Utah, don’t hesitate in contacting an experienced attorney to help protect your rights, from Salt Lake City and beyond.