Can You File An Anonymous Sexual Harassment Claim In California?
Sexual harassment is prevalent across a range of industries in California. Sexual harassment is a serious problem in the modern world, which is why employees who become victims of or witnesses to sexually harassing behavior at work are encouraged to complain.
However, many employees are reluctant to file a sexual harassment claim out of fear of retaliation. For this reason, it makes perfect sense to wonder, “Can you file an anonymous sexual harassment claim in California?”
Consult with a Los Angeles sexual harassment attorney to discuss your particular situation and determine whether you can complain about harassment in the workplace anonymously.
What You Need to Do Before Filing an Anonymous Complaint
The first thing you need to do before filing a complaint is to verify that the alleged perpetrator’s behavior meets the definition of sexual harassment. Under California law, sexual harassment is defined as engaging in unsolicited or unwanted conduct of a sexual nature.
Typically, isolated instances of harassment do not constitute sexual harassment. In order to hold someone accountable for their sexually harassing behavior, the harassment should be pervasive and consistent to the point that it:
- creates a hostile work environment; or
- interferes with the employee’s ability to work.
Under California law, employers are legally required to provide and maintain a safe work environment free of discrimination and harassment. One of the obligations of an employer is to provide sexual harassment training for supervisors and employees and develop a sexual harassment prevention plan and anti-harassment policies.
The purpose of those anti-harassment measures is to ensure that employees can report sexual harassment at work without the fear of retaliation.
Can You File an Anonymous Sexual Harassment Claim?
Yes. If you become a victim of sexual harassment in the workplace, you should follow your employer’s reporting requirements to make an anonymous complaint. Employers in California are required to implement a system that allows employees to report sexual harassment without revealing their identity.
If you file an anonymous sexual harassment claim, your employer must take reasonable measures to protect your anonymity. When handling your anonymous complaint, your employer must take appropriate steps to resolve the claim.
Employers are prohibited from retaliating against employees who complain about harassment or discrimination in the workplace. If you get fired for filing a sexual harassment claim, you might have grounds for a wrongful termination claim.
If your employer fails to resolve your sexual harassment claim or retaliates against you for reporting the issue, you should consider filing a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). After receiving your sexual harassment claim, the EEOC will investigate your complaint and take steps to resolve the issue, if needed. If the issue cannot be resolved through mediation, you may be able to pursue a lawsuit against your employer.
If you are considering filing an anonymous sexual harassment complaint, it is advisable to be represented by an attorney to protect your anonymity. Your attorney will take the appropriate steps to ensure that your identity remains unknown during the claims process. Schedule a free and confidential consultation with our attorneys at Obagi Law Group, P.C., by calling 424-284-2401.