When an employee is sexually harassed in the workplace, that employee could possibly be compensated for the damages that they suffer caused by the harassment. These are called civil penalties for sexual harassment in New York. The monetary compensation can be due to economic loss from having to quit a job not getting a promotion or receiving a demotion. The monetary award could be to compensate the harassed employee for the mental stress and anguish caused by the sexual harassment. In order to obtain these civil penalties, you would have to contact a knowledgeable sexual harassment lawyer who has decades of experience in successfully handling these types of cases. At Ricotta and Marks, we understand what it takes to protect the rights of our clients and fight for fair compensation. However, there are instances where sexual harassment can actually go beyond civil litigation and become a crime.
When Does Sexual Harassment Become a Crime?
Not every case should only call for civil penalties for sexual harassment in New York. Some instances of sexual harassment can actually be considered a crime. If this is the case, or you are not sure if the harassment you just experienced should be considered criminal, then you definitely should call the police. Not only should you call the police to report the incident, you should also contact an experienced NYC sexual harassment attorney to help you through this process. You need someone on your side to explain everything and who will work to protect you and your rights. You will need to give statements to the police as well as your employer. Having your personal attorney sitting next to you, helping you throughout the entire process, will make it much easier and less stressful, knowing that someone has your back.
When most people think of sexual harassment in the workplace, they think of rude and crude sexual comments or physical gestures directed at females at work. Sexual harassment could be continued unwanted sexual advances such as an employee asking out a co-worker over and over. Sexual harassment could also be a supervisor using their position of power over a staff member to gain sexual favors. These examples of sexual harassment are usually dealt with through complaints to human relations, lawsuits, and civil judgments for monetary awards.
Sometimes, though, the sexual harassment can turn physical and/or criminal. Some of the following behaviors can both be considered sexual harassment causing a hostile workplace and also be considered criminal in nature. Some of these behaviors include:
- Physical assault and/or unwanted touching,
- Indecent Exposure
- Sexual Assault
- Illegal Recording or Photography
The crime of stalking can sometimes be confusing and difficult to prove. Usually, stalking is defined as a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to feel fear. It is more than just a single event, but a pattern of behavior often made up of individual acts that could, by themselves, seem harmless or noncriminal, but when taken in the context of a stalking situation, could constitute criminal acts. Stalking could be any of the following:
- Repeated phone calls, texts, emails, unwanted gifts,
- Follows you and shows up wherever you are,
- Damages your home, car, or other property,
- Monitors your phone calls or computer use at work, possibly through spyware,
- Uses technology, like hidden cameras or global positioning systems (GPS), to track where you go,
- Drives by or lingers near your home, school, or work,
- Threatens to hurt you, your family, friends, or pets, and
- Uses other people to try to communicate with you, like children, family, or friends.
If you are experiencing any of the above types of behavior from a co-worker or supervisor, calling the police is a must. You should also contact the experienced sexual harassment lawyers at Ricotta and Marks to help you through this process. Not only can we help in reporting the incident to the police, but we can also help you collect civil penalties in NYC for the sexual harassment you experienced.