How To Prove A Harassment Case In The Workplace


How To Prove A Harassment Case In The Workplace

Workplace harassment is prevalent worldwide, with data suggesting that 52% of employees have experienced this in one form or another. According to employment law, workplace harassment impacts your well-being, behavior, and overall career trajectory. Although many have been unable to prove their case, you can have a better chance of being heard when faced with this difficult situation by applying the tips below.

  1. Know what harassment is and establish a timeline

If you’re going to take someone on, it’s best to know what harassment is. Otherwise, you might find yourself in a tight situation when the alleged perpetrator turns the tables on you and files for defamation and reputation damage. First, know what your company says about harassment and what actions and behaviors constitute it. Many company laws and regulations center this around color, religion, sex, age, sexual orientation, race, and disability. The next thing is to understand how the harassment occurred because the company’s disciplinary committee will ask for that. That usually includes the human resource department. Can you determine if it was physical or verbal acts that created a hostile or offensive work environment? Once that is out of the way, you must create a detailed timeline to track events. It must be chronological to help the HR department or the disciplinary committee establish a harassment pattern. A chronological timeline often shows any escalation in behavior. This will be discussed further in the next point.

  1. Gather evidence and seek legal advice

Evidence and records of specific incidents are critical in harassment cases. To avoid being accused wrongly, keep a detailed record of harassment incidents you were subjected to. Indicate the locations, witnesses, and any other piece of evidence you can gather. Social media interactions, text messages, emails, and anything of the sort will prove useful when the time comes. Sometimes, perpetrators assume that contact outside office hours does not constitute harassment. However, it will be up to you and your attorney to prove otherwise. At this point, it’s advisable to seek experienced legal representation from experts such as Barone Defense Firm to assess the incident and collect evidence. The evidence you gather must prove beyond every reasonable doubt that harassment did indeed occur, and you need valuable guidance to prove this.

  1. Report the harassment

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The next stage after gathering evidence is to report it to the department responsible for such issues. Mere reporting may not be sufficient because you will be asked for evidence. Remember to follow specific policies and procedures to avoid the risk of the department overlooking the case. That usually happens because you failed to observe or adhere to laid down rules for reporting workplace issues of that nature.

Reporting initiates an investigation and is not necessarily a justice system or an endpoint. You will have a better chance of proving the case in court after your employer has documented your harassment report. Sometimes, your report is all it takes to initiate a full-blown investigation, as other employees may have done the same concerning the alleged perpetrator.


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