Harassment and Discrimination Defense Lawyer Southern California
California laws provide aggressive protection for workers against harassment and discrimination in the workplace. For employers, that translates to a heightened potential for administrative complaints and lawsuits. Employers need to be ready to prevent and defend against these complaints and lawsuits. When they need an experienced harassment and discrimination defense lawyer in southern California businesses call the Law Offices of Susan A. Rodriguez, APC.
Why Employers Need a Harassment and Discrimination Defense Lawyer in Southern California
Both federal and state laws protect employees from harassment and discrimination, but California state law provides even greater protections and options for filing claims against employers. As a result, California employers may find themselves facing a complaint before the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) or the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). A harassment and discrimination defense lawyer in southern California can help employers prevent, navigate and defend against these complaints.
What Is Workplace Harassment and Discrimination?
The California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) prohibits harassment and discrimination in the workplace, but what does that really mean? Two general categories of harassment are actionable: quid pro quo harassment and hostile work environment harassment.
In quid pro quo harassment, a supervisor tells an employee that he or she will make a particular employment decision based on whether the employee meets sexual demands. Quid pro quo harassment is sexual harassment only.
A hostile work environment is broader than quid pro quo as it does not have to involve sexual harassment and can occur regardless of whether the perpetrator is in a position of authority. A hostile work environment exists when behavior is so pervasive that it creates a toxic working atmosphere for one or more employees.
Finally, workplace discrimination is conduct by a superior or coworker that is based on the recipient’s status in one of the categories protected by FEHA.
Employers can be liable for quid pro quo, hostile work environment or discrimination even if they formally prohibit such behavior. By engaging an experienced harassment and discrimination defense lawyer, southern California employers can learn what steps to take to educate employees on harassment and what policies and practices are required to address suspected harassment.
Protected Classes Under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act
The California Fair Employment and Housing Act prohibits harassment and discrimination against applicants for employment and employees on a number of bases:
- Age greater than 40.
- Gender identity and gender expression.
- Genetic information.
- Marital status.
- Medical or health condition.
- Military or veteran status.
- National origin.
- Sexual orientation.
A southern California harassment and discrimination defense attorney can help enterprises prevent harassment and discrimination and assemble a solid defense when complaints do arise.
A Harassment and Discrimination Defense Lawyer Southern California Businesses Trust
The damages awarded in harassment and discrimination lawsuits can be substantial. The Fair Employment and Housing Act provides for the award of front pay and back pay for applicants who are denied employment and for employees who prevail in their complaints. The Act also provides for punitive damages.
If an employer gets in front of the wrong court and jury with a bad set of facts, a devastating punitive damage award could result.
Employers are also subject to class action lawsuits by employees claiming they have, as a broad category, suffered harassment or discrimination. These kinds of cases can substantially increase the amount of damages and attorneys’ fees.
Employers must have in place solid employment policies and practices that are legally compliant. Businesses should also be prepared to defend themselves in court with the help of a harassment and discrimination defense lawyer in southern California.
A Skilled Harassment and Discrimination Defense Lawyer in Southern California Is Important for Your Business
A harassment and discrimination defense lawyer in southern California serves several purposes for employers. Even large enterprises with in-house counsel generally do not have specific expertise in harassment and discrimination law. Consequently, they have limited resources to provide legal guidance in policy-making and everyday personnel management, two activities that play a significant role in the avoidance of costly litigation. An experienced attorney can provide these services.
If the worst happens, however, and an employer is faced with a harassment or discrimination lawsuit, having a competent litigator is a must. A skilled attorney can craft an effective southern California harassment and discrimination defense for enterprise and large business and gives employers the best chance of prevailing against complaints.
Contact Susan A. Rodriguez, the Harassment and Discrimination Defense Lawyer Southern California Employers Trust
At the Law Offices of Susan A. Rodriguez APC, you will find the services you need from an experienced Los Angeles harassment and discrimination defense attorney. From policy development to management training, full-scale litigation and everything in-between, we can serve your every need. When you need a harassment and discrimination defense lawyer in southern California, contact us at (213) 943-1323 or complete our online contact form.
355 S. Grand Ave., Ste. 2450
Los Angeles, CA 90071
Office: (213) 943-1323
Cell: (310) 350-9995
4601 Wilshire Blvd., Ste. 240
Los Angeles, CA 90071