What is Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment?

Sexual harassment in the workplace has been a public focus in recent years, thanks largely to the Time’s Up movement. While there are different types of sexual harassment, many employees who came forward as part of #TimesUp experienced one particularly concerning kind of harassment, commonly referred to as “quid pro quo” harassment.

Quid pro quo harassment makes your job or aspects of your job a condition of sexual conduct. This inherently involves a harasser with authority to make decisions regarding your position. For example:

  • The owner of the company offers you a pay increase if you engage in sexual conduct
  • An executive offers you a promotion or additional job perks if you engage in sexual conduct
  • A manager threatens to terminate you or deny you a promotion if you refuse to engage in sexual conduct

Whether you are offered a job benefit or threatened with adverse action, this type of sexual harassment is taken very seriously by California anti-discrimination and harassment laws.

In sexual harassment cases involving a hostile work environment, an employer has the opportunity to stop the harassment before the company is liable. However, quid pro quo harassment is so egregious that an employer is automatically liable for the conduct – even if company owners did not know it was happening.

Anyone who suffered this type of harassment should take the proper legal action, even if you received a job benefit. Putting employees in this position to decide between unwanted sexual conduct or their careers is unacceptable in the employment sphere.

Let a California Employment Law Attorney Help You

At Martin & Bontrager, APC, we represent employees who experienced any type of sexual harassment, including quid pro quo. Contact us online or call at 323-940-1700 to discuss what happened at work and what your legal rights and options might be. Our California employment lawyers are here to help.