Unwelcome touching or grabbing is one of the most common and traumatic forms of workplace physical harassment. This form of harassment can leave physical and mental damages and prevent employees from doing their jobs or wanting to return to work, which is why speaking to a New York City workplace unwanted touching lawyer is crucial.
Federal and New York state anti discrimination laws make unwelcome touching in the workplace illegal. Victims of sexual harassment in the workplace shouldn’t be afraid of employer retaliation when coming forward about unwanted conduct. An experienced New York City workplace unwanted touching lawyer can help stop the problem and obtain financial compensation for damages.
When Is Touching Physical Considered Harassment?
What one person feels is friendliness or an expression of affection may be what another perceives as workplace harassment in New York City. It can be difficult to draw the line between what’s illegal and what’s legal. Typically, touching crosses the line to discrimination and harassment if it’s unwelcome, inappropriate, or violent. If touching makes you feel uncomfortable or victimized in the workplace, it’s harassment—whether it’s a manager massaging your shoulders without you asking or a physical confrontation in the break room.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) defines harassment loosely. Harassment is unwelcome conduct based on an individual’s characteristics (such as race, age, sexual orientation or gender) that is severe or pervasive enough to create an intimidating, abusive, or hostile work environment. From this definition, many forms of touching can qualify as harassment if it’s unwanted and makes a workplace hostile:
- Hand holding
- Inappropriate physical contact
- Unwanted sexual contact
- Physical assaults
The courts most likely won’t see an annoyance or non-severe isolated incident as illegal, but a severe unwelcome touching incident or an ongoing trend of smaller incidents is harassment. If you’re unsure whether you have a case of physical or sexual harassment at work, don’t hesitate to contact an NYC unwanted touching lawyer at Joseph & Norinsberg LLC, for a free consultation about your case.
What Are My Rights In New York City?
As an employee in NYC, the NYC Human Rights Law and Title VII in the Civil Rights Act protect you legally in the event of unwelcome touching or grabbing. Both are anti-discrimination laws that outline what constitutes harassment and how the state will handle such cases. Thanks to these laws and others, you have the right to take a harasser to court for physical, emotional, and financial damages.
The moment you become a victim of unwelcome touching or grabbing at work, speak up about the incident. File a complaint with human resources or the department in charge of this subject. Follow your company’s protocol for harassment (if it has one) and try to solve the problem internally first. It’s possible that your harasser didn’t realize his or her actions were inappropriate or making you feel uncomfortable.
If your workplace does nothing to prevent or stop unwelcome touching or your harasser continues his or her misconduct, you can file a sexual harassment claim with the EEOC in New York City. The EEOC will investigate your case, put an end to harassment, and enable you to hire a lawyer if your situation calls for litigation. Your most powerful option to fight against unwelcome touching or grabbing in the workplace is to hire a New York City unwanted touching attorney.
Contact a New York City Unwanted Touching Lawyer Today
Unwanted touching or grabbing can be emotionally distressing, leading to failure to perform your job duties, post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, and withdrawal. When someone infringes on your rights with inappropriate touching, you may be able to take the culprit to court. When you need expert New York City sexual harassment lawyer, trust Joseph & Norinsberg, LLC. Our experienced team has handled over 100 cases and won numerous multi-figure settlements for harassed employees. Use our online contact form or call 212-227-5700 today to speak with an attorney.