Can I Sue My Employer For Creating A Toxic Work Environment?
By Corey Hanrahan
Can I sue my employer for creating a toxic work environment? Yes, you may be able to sue your employer for a toxic work environment, but only if that toxic work environment rises to the level of a hostile work environment under California’s anti-harassment laws. This would require a showing that the conduct creating the toxic work environment was related to a protected characteristic under the Fair Employment and Housing Act (e.g., age, race, sex, gender, disability, etc.). If not, and the conduct is merely bullying unrelated to a protected characteristic, then it can be difficult, or impossible, to assert that claim in court.
“…This would require a showing that the conduct creating the toxic work environment was related to a protected characteristic under the Fair Employment and Housing Act (e.g., age, race, sex, gender, disability, etc.)…“
For example, hostile environment sexual harassment involves various forms of verbal, physical, or visual conduct, of a sexual or nonsexual nature, that has the purpose of creating a hostile or offensive work environment. A hostile environment harassment claim does not require proof of a loss of tangible job benefits or actual injury. However, you do need to prove that the harassment was sufficiently severe or pervasive.
Sexual harassment cases can sometimes be difficult to prove without in-depth knowledge of the laws that apply to harassment claims. For example, depending on the type of sexual harassment, you may need to prove that the harassment is sufficiently severe or pervasive, which requires a careful analysis of the conduct’s severity, or whether the conduct forms a pattern. This is why it is important to have a knowledgeable, experienced harassment attorney in San Diego analyze your claims.
If you have been subjected to any form of harassment at work, including sexual harassment, contact The Hanrahan Firm for a free consultation.