Legal Definition of Sexual Harassment
There are different legal acts that protect you from sexual harassment in the workplace in the United States and in Missouri, specifically. In the US, there is the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title VII which makes such harassment and discrimination illegal throughout the country. Then, Missouri has the Missouri Human Rights Act, which clarifies the laws concerning such harassment and discrimination within this state. Legally, sexual harassment is defined by these documents as any unwanted sexual advances, including verbal comments, unwanted physical contact, and requests for favors of a sexual nature.
The law protects employees and customers of businesses from such illegal conduct on a federal and state level. Having said that, the law applies to any circumstance in which the conduct interferes with workplace performance or occurs multiple times. Then, there are situations where an employer retaliates against the employee for rejecting the attention and advances of a sexual nature. Such situations can involve being fired, demoted, having your schedule changed, or experiencing some form of disciplinary action. If this happens to you, then you not only have a sexual harassment claim; you also have a retaliation claim for illegal retaliation of an employer to an employee.
Yet, sexual harassment claims are not only embarrassing and difficult to pursue; they can also be complex and confusing. You must file such claims before the given deadline and you must avoid making any mistakes in the process, or you might forfeit your right to legal compensation and protection. To ensure that you don’t miss any steps or run out the statute of limitations, contact a sexual harassment attorney as soon as possible for a free consultation and guidance going forward.