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San Diego Hostile Workplace Lawyer

San Diego Hostile Workplace Lawyer Hero

Your San Diego place of employment should be a safe space where you can do your job free from harassment. Your employer has a duty to take action to help protect you from harassment and stop harassment if it occurs.

If you have been subject to unwanted harassing behaviors on account of your race, color, religion, sexual orientation, disability, or other personal characteristics, you may have a claim against your employer. A claim is possible whether you were harassed by a supervisor or a co-worker.

At Gomez Trial Attorneys, we know it can be hard to figure out whether you have a hostile work environment claim against your current or former employer and that Google-ing may just leave you more confused. We don’t think you should have to figure it out alone; we offer a free case evaluation. Contact us at 833-GET-GOMEZ or here to schedule yours today.

What Behaviors Are Considered Criteria for a Hostile Work Environment?

In California, a hostile workplace is a type of workplace harassment claim. An employee is subject to a hostile workplace when they are subjected to severe or pervasive harassing conduct on account of a protected class that they are a member of (or that their employer believes they are a member of). Protected characteristics include race, color, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, age, and disability.

Harassment comes in many forms. Examples of harassing conduct include unwanted sexual advances, unwanted touching, a supervisor not stopping harassment by a coworker, relentless “teasing” based on an employee’s disability, and ongoing use of racial slurs (even when not directed at the employee). Harassment is generally considered severe if it harms or threatens to harm a person physically. It is generally considered pervasive if it occurs multiple times.

How Do You Prove a Hostile Work Environment?

Under California law, to establish that they were subjected to a hostile work environment, you must prove all of the following:

  • You are a member of a protected class;
  • You were subjected to unwelcome harassment in the workplace;
  • The harassment was based on your protected class;
  • The harassment unreasonably interfered with your work performance by creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment; and
  • Your employer is liable for the harassment.

Ortiz v. Dameron Hospital Assn. (2019) 37 Cal.App.5th 568, 581 [250 Cal.Rptr.3d 1]; CACI 2521A

In San Diego employment harassment cases, employers rarely admit liability. They often deny that the harassment occurred or allege that they took appropriate action to stop it.

Fortunately, it is still possible to prove your case when an employer denies what occurred. The following are examples of evidence that can be used to support your case:

  • Witness statements from others who observed the harassment;
  • Documentary evidence like emails sent from the harasser(s) to you;
  • Complaints filed by you and the employer’s responses;
  • Recordings of the harassing conduct.

You should preserve any evidence you have in your possession, but do not worry if you don’t have everything. A hostile work environment attorney can use tools of the trade like discovery requests and depositions to obtain the evidence needed to prevail on your claim, even if it is currently in your employer’s possession.

What Is the Average Settlement Amount for a Hostile Workplace?

One of the most common questions a workplace harassment lawyer gets is “how much can I get with my workplace harassment case?” This is understandable. Workplace harassment cases can be time-consuming and emotionally taxing, so you may be wondering if it’s worth it.

Unfortunately, there are no reliable statistics regarding average settlement amounts for hostile workplace claims in California. Settlement amounts can vary between tens of thousands of dollars to over a million dollars. The strength of the case (how egregious the conduct was and how much evidence there is) is the greatest factor in determining what a case will settle for. A San Diego hostile workplace lawyer can help estimate what your case may be worth.

California does not cap awards in hostile workplace cases, which means employers are often more willing to settle and bring better offers than under federal law or in other states where the employer’s potential financial responsibility is capped.

Need a San Diego Hostile Workplace Lawyer? Get Gomez

If you have been subject to a hostile workplace or suffered other wrongdoing by your employer in San Diego, California, Gomez Trial Attorneys is here for you. We have a strong track record of successfully representing plaintiffs in employment law claims.

We are happy to help you determine whether you may have a claim against your current or former employer and, if so, to help you navigate the process of pursuing your claim. For a free wrongful termination case evaluation, contact us online or by calling (619) 237-3490.

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August 2020

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