What Type of Harassment Is Quid Pro Quo?

Examples of Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment

“Quid pro quo” is a Latin phrase. When translated directly to English, it means “something for something.” In other words, it signifies some kind of exchange. When you are in a workplace, the only proper forms of exchange are when your labor is exchanged for benefits and compensation.

Quid pro quo harassment involves a much darker and harmful exchange. The term is usually used to refer to a type of sexual harassment in which an employee’s supervisor, manager, or other authority figure offers or suggests that an employee should be given some kind of reward in return for a sexual favor.

Sexual harassment is considered to be a kind of sex discrimination. The law forbids discrimination when it comes to any aspect of employment, including firing, pay, job assignments, promotions, layoffs, training, fringe benefits, and any other term or condition of employment. When it comes to quid pro quo, this form of sexual harassment is illegal, whether it is implicit or explicit. Some common examples of quid pro quo sexual harassment include:

  • A supervisor or manager requesting sexual favors as a condition for hiring, promotion, advancement, or other workplace opportunities
  • A supervisor or manager threatening to terminate, transfer, fire, or negatively affect an employee’s quality of life if sexual favors are not performed or continued
  • A supervisor or manager promising a promotion or raise in return for sexual favors

How to Prove Quid Pro Quo Harassment

In order to claim quid pro quo harassment, there are some specific elements that need to have taken place in your case. It will benefit you to have the help of skilled lawyers like the ones on the team at Shellist Lazarz Slobin LLP. The following elements are needed in order to prove a harassment case, and we can help you do exactly that: 

  • The plaintiff must have been an employee of, or applied for a job with, the defendant.
  • The defendant and alleged harasser must have made unwanted sexual advances to the plaintiff or engaged in other unwanted verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature.
  • Some job benefits were conditioned, through words or conduct, on the plaintiff’s acceptance of the defendant’s advances or conduct, or the employment decisions affecting the plaintiff were made based on their acceptance or rejection of the sexual conduct.
  • During the time of the alleged conduct, the defendant was a supervisor or agent for the company in question.
  • The plaintiff was harmed by the allegations.
  • The conduct was a substantial factor in the plaintiff’s harm.

If you have been placed in this situation, we extend our sincerest condolences to you and are here to assure you that you have a team of skilled lawyers on your side. It is common practice for employees who are seeking justice for a quid pro quo harassment case to file a complaint with a state or federal labor protection agency. We understand that this process can be intricate, and hopefully, you do not have prior experience dealing with it. We are familiar with the details of this process and will help you through it to make sure that no boxes are left unchecked.

Our team is committed to handling the employment law cases that come our way and will advocate fiercely on your behalf. If, due to the details of your case, it is determined that you have been a victim of quid pro quo sexual harassment in the workplace, you can be entitled to the following legal remedies:

  • You may recover compensatory damages for last wages, benefits, or employment opportunities.
  • You may claim damages for emotional distress and get your job back, if applicable.
  • You may be awarded punitive damages for egregious violations to discourage the defendant to continue with this behavior in the future.

If you believe you are a victim of quid pro quo sexual harassment in the workplace, there is legal help available to you through our team. Call Shellist Lazarz Slobin LLP at (713) 352-3433 or contact us online for legal support for employment law.

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