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How Much Compensation Can I Receive for Workplace Sexual Harassment?

Illinois sexual harassment attorneysIf you have been a victim of sexual harassment at work, you may have the opportunity to receive compensation for damages. Sexual harassment is a type of employment discrimination protected against by both federal law as well as Illinois state law. Hostile work environment harassment occurs when an employee is subjected to unsolicited sexual advances, antagonistic behavior, or disparaging remarks about his or her gender which negatively affect the employee’s ability to do his or her job. Quid pro quo sexual harassment refers to instances when a person of authority such as a boss or manager attempts to use his or her authority to gain sexual favors from subordinates. For some victims of workplace sexual harassment, filing a discrimination claim allows them to hold their employer accountable for wrongdoing and receive compensation for damages.

Types of Damages Available for Financial Compensation

In the context of an employment discrimination claim, the term “damages” refers to harm caused by the discriminating or harassing behavior. The amount of compensation a claimant can be awarded for sexual harassment is dependent on the damages he or she incurred. Damages in a sexual harassment claim most often include compensation for lost wages and missed career opportunities. Sometimes, compensation for the victim’s pain and suffering, called compensatory damages, is awarded as well. Punitive damages are the least common type of damages addressed in sexual harassment claims and are designed to “punish” the employer for failing to address severe harassment or discrimination.

You May Be Entitled to Back Pay

Sexual harassment is not only humiliating and demeaning but it can also leave victims in financial distress. Victims of sexual harassment who were given fewer hours, paid less, denied a raise or promotion, or were fired as a result of sexual harassment, are often entitled to back pay. Back pay refers to the benefits an employee would have received if not for the sexual harassment. Back pay generally includes compensation for:

  • Wages;
  • Bonuses, tips, and commissions;
  • Health insurance or life insurance benefits;
  • Pension and retirement benefits;
  • Vacation days and sick pay; and
  • Stock options.

Federal law gives employees the right to return to their job if they were fired or forced to resign as a result of sexual harassment. However, reinstatement is not always a realistic possibility. In some cases, sexual harassment victims are awarded “front pay” which is intended to compensate them for the loss of future wages.

Contact a Chicago, Illinois Sexual Harassment Lawyer

To learn more about sexual harassment lawsuits, contact the experienced St. Charles sexual harassment attorneys at Mirabella, Kincaid, Frederick & Mirabella, LLC. Call 630-665-7300 today to schedule a confidential consultation.

 

Sources:

https://www.eeoc.gov/laws/types/sex.cfm

https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/employment_discrimination

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St. Charles, IL 60174
630-665-7300
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From our law office in Wheaton, IL the family law and civil litigation law attorneys of Mirabella, Kincaid, Frederick and Mirabella, represent businesses and individual clients throughout the western suburbs of Chicago, Illinois including Wheaton, Naperville, Oak Brook, Glen Ellyn, Carol Stream, Lombard, Downers Grove, Burr Ridge, Lisle, Elmhurst, Oakbrook Terrace, Winfield, Woodridge, Warrenville and throughout DuPage, Kane and Kendall Counties.

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