San Diego Hostile Work Environment Lawyer
Are you struggling with a hostile work environment in San Diego, CA? If you’ve been mistreated in the workplace, you don’t have to handle it alone. An experienced San Diego hostile work environment lawyer at Ferraro Vera San Diego Employment Lawyers can help you fight for justice.
Our legal team has years of experience helping employees hold their employers accountable for violating their rights. We’d be happy to put our experience to work for you.
Do you suspect that your employer has violated your legal rights? Call our law offices in San Diego, California, at (619) 693-7727 to schedule a free consultation.
How Ferraro Vera San Diego Employment Lawyers Can Help With a Hostile Work Environment Claim in San Diego
California employment laws are extremely complex. The odds are good that your employer has experience handling legal claims. You may be new to the process.
When you’re worried about your job and financial security, you shouldn’t also have to worry about handling a lengthy legal complaint. An experienced San Diego employment attorney can provide sound legal advice and help you with every aspect of your case.
At Ferraro Vera San Diego Employment Lawyers, we represent employees in every industry. When you hire our legal team to help with your claim, you can rest assured that we will:
- Help you document the issues in your work environment
- Gather evidence to support your claim
- Handle all paperwork and communications involved in your case
- Take the lead in all negotiations
- Fight to protect your rights in court if necessary
You don’t have to face the challenges of the California legal system on your own. Our San Diego employment lawyers have years of experience behind us and are ready to put our skills to work for you. Just call today to learn more about establishing an attorney client relationship.
Overview of Hostile Work Environment Laws in California
California’s hostile work environment law is defined under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act. Under California law, a hostile work environment is severe or pervasive harassment that creates an offensive or abusive work environment for at least one employee.
To prove a hostile work environment claims, you’ll have to establish two basic elements:
- The harassment was severe or pervasive
- The harassment was based upon a protected characteristic
Protected characteristics in California include:
- Ancestry/national origin
- Age (40 and over)
- Sex/gender (including pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, or related medical conditions)
- Sexual orientation
- Gender identity/gender expression
- Medical condition
- Genetic information
- Marital status
- Military or veteran status
To succeed, you’ll also have to show that the offensive environment somehow impacted your ability to perform your job duties.
Overview of Federal Hostile Work Environment Laws
Federal law also provides protections for employees experiencing a hostile work environment. A hostile work environment is one form of harassment claim recognized in the state of California. The other is quid pro quo harassment.
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) defines a hostile work environment as one where the harassment in the workplace is severe or pervasive enough to create a work environment that a reasonable person would consider intimidating, hostile, or abusive.
Often, that harassment is sexual harassment or gender-based harassment. However, a hostile work environment can arise from repeated harassment based on any type of protected characteristic, including:
- Sexual orientation or gender identity
- National origin
- Genetic information
Isolated incidents are generally not sufficient to create a hostile work environment unless they are extremely serious. In some instances, situations involving assault or sexual assault may be extreme enough to create a hostile work environment–even if they happen on a one-time basis.
Hostile work environment claims are often based upon offensive conduct in the workplace, such as:
- Physical assault or threats or violence
- Offensive objects or pictures in the workplace
- Interference with work performance
Importantly, a hostile work environment claim in San Diego doesn’t have to be based upon your employer’s conduct. You may have a valid claim, even if it is a co-worker or group of co-workers who create a hostile work environment.
Our attorneys have years of experience handling complex workplace discrimination cases. We know how difficult it can be to come forward and report abusive conduct in the workplace. If you suspect you are experiencing a hostile work environment, call our law firm for a free case review today. We’d be happy to evaluate your situation and discuss your legal options.
How Do I Know Whether I Have a Valid Hostile Work Environment Claim in San Diego?
There are any number of situations that could be considered “hostile” under state and federal nondiscrimination laws.
For example, you could be experiencing a hostile work environment if:
- You are treated unfairly or harassed because of your membership in a protected class, such as gender, race, disability, or age (over age 40)
- A co-worker or co-workers repeatedly comment on your sexual orientation or make comments of a sexual nature in your workplace
- You report behavior that could amount to a hostile work environment and experience retaliation or wrongful termination
- Someone in the workplace is continually harassing your co-worker, creating a situation that you find offensive or abusive
The key element of a hostile work environment claim is that the conduct is so offensive that a reasonable person would find the workplace hostile.
Do I Have to Experience Economic Loss to Bring a Hostile Work Environment Claim?
No. You may be entitled to take legal action even if you haven’t suffered any type of economic loss from a hostile work environment. In other words, you don’t have to lose your job or suffer a demotion to make a claim for a hostile work environment.
What is the Difference Between Discrimination and Hostile Work Environment?
Employment discrimination happens when your employer or supervisor treats you differently because of a protected characteristic while you’re performing your job duties.
A hostile work environment, by contrast, refers to the work environment as a whole. The offensive conduct doesn’t have to be related to your job duties or performance.
What Should I Do If I’m Experiencing a Hostile Work Environment?
By definition, a hostile work environment puts you in a difficult situation. You might not know where to turn for help. However, there are a number of steps that you should take to protect your legal rights.
It’s important to:
- Report the offensive conduct to a manager, supervisor, or your HR department
- If you feel comfortable, ask the person creating the hostile work environment to stop
- Speak with an experienced San Diego employment discrimination attorney
Workplace harassment that creates a hostile work environment can be a violation of California labor laws. To explore your legal options and learn more about your rights, call our offices for a free consultation today.
Can I Sue My Employer for Creating a Hostile Work Environment?
Hostile work environment claims in California are first investigated by the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH). DFEH can investigate your claim and decide whether the facts warrant legal action.
However, the DFEH investigatory process is optional. You can also obtain a “right to sue” notice without going through the state process.
Generally speaking, your employer may be liable for hostile work environment discrimination if:
- The hostile workplace was created by a supervisor or manager
- The employer was negligent in allowing the offensive conduct to continue
- The employer was negligent in failing to stop the offensive conduct once they became aware of the situation
It’s important to have a qualified employment discrimination lawyer by your side before you take legal action. California laws are extremely detailed–and one mistake could be fatal to your claim.
Our attorneys at Ferraro Vera San Diego Employment Lawyers have years of experience handling sensitive cases like yours. We’re here to help in any way we can. Just call our law offices to schedule a free case evaluation today.
How Long Do I Have to Take Legal Action Based on a Hostile Work Environment in California?
Under California law, you have three years to file a complaint with the DFEH. However, you shouldn’t wait too long to take legal action.
An experienced San Diego hostile work environment attorney at Ferraro Vera San Diego Employment Lawyers can help gather the evidence you need to support your claim. We can also file all paperwork and necessary information before the deadline.
Contact a San Diego Hostile Work Environment Lawyer for a Free Consultation
Are you struggling in the workplace because of a hostile work environment? Are you wondering where to turn for help? A San Diego hostile work environment lawyer at Ferraro Vera San Diego Employment Lawyers can help. We offer a free consultation, so don’t hesitate to reach out for the legal advice you deserve.