Beverly Hostile Work Environment

Hostile Work Environment Lawyer Serving Clients throughout Beverly, Illinois

Did you know that harassment at work can violate numerous laws when that harassment is based on a protected characteristic? For example, when workplace harassment is based on a person’s race, religion, sex, national origin, age, or disability, it may be unlawful under federal statute such as Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 or the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) or the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA).

According to the U.S. Equal Opportunity Commission (EEOC), “harassment is a form of employment discrimination” when it is based on a person’s protected status. To learn more about filing a claim, you should reach out to an aggressive Beverly hostile work environment lawyer.

Who Can Create a Hostile Work Environment for a Beverly Employee?

There are numerous people who can be responsible for engaging in discriminatory conduct that results in a hostile work environment. While some unlawful forms of employment discrimination only have remedies when they result from the behavior of an employer or another party who works for the employer, a hostile work environment can exist even when customers engage in discriminatory behavior. Unwelcome conduct from the following individuals can contribute to causing or can cause a hostile work environment, according to the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL):

  • Supervisors;
  • Co-workers;
  • Customers;
  • Contractors; and
  • Anyone else the employee interacts with at work.

How Do Courts Determine Whether Harassing Conduct is Severe or Pervasive Such That It Rises to the Level of a Hostile Work Environment?

Unlawful discrimination or harassment might result in a hostile work environment when that “unwelcome conduct renders the workplace atmosphere intimidating, hostile, or offensive.” There is a subjective standard (the victim feels affected) as well as an objective standard (a reasonable person would believe that the unwelcome conduct created a hostile work environment). For the objective portion, a reasonable person would have to think that the unwelcome conduct was “severe and pervasive enough” to create a hostile or abusive place to work.

How does the court decide when unlawful harassment rises to the level of being “severe and pervasive enough” to result in a hostile work environment? The DOL explains that the court takes each case on its own but typically considers the following factors in making a determination:

  • How frequently the unwelcome discriminatory conduct occurred;
  • Severity of the unwelcome discriminatory conduct;
  • Whether the conduct was either physically threatening or humiliating to the victim (as opposed to being “a mere offensive utterance”);
  • Whether the unwelcome discriminatory conduct interfered with the victim’s work performance;
  • How the unwelcome discriminatory conduct affected the victim’s psychological well-being; and
  • Whether party engaging in the unwelcome discriminatory conduct was an employer or supervisor (as opposed to being a co-worker, a customer, or another party).

None of these factors on their own can determine the outcome of a case, and employees should know that they do not need to meet the requirements of each factor in order to have a successful hostile work environment claim.

Hostile Work Environment Attorney in Beverly

Have you faced unwanted, discriminatory conduct at work that resulted in a hostile work environment? An experienced Beverly hostile work environment attorney can help you to file a claim. Contact the Law Office of Mitchell A. Kline for more information about our services.