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Understanding Quid Pro Quo Sexual HarassmentClient-Focused & Passionate Representation

Understanding Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment


Employees in South Florida have protections against discrimination on the basis of sex under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which is a federal law, as well as under the Florida Civil Rights Act. There are multiple forms that sex discrimination can take, and one type of sex discrimination is sexual harassment. Then, there are two general types of sexual harassment: quid pro quo harassment, and harassment that rises to the level of creating a hostile work environment. We know how insidious quid pro quo harassment can be, and how difficult it often is for an employee facing this kind of harassment to come forward.

We want to provide you with more information about quid pro quo harassment so that you have a clear understanding of it. If you have any questions or concerns, an experienced Palm Beach Gardens sexual harassment attorney is here to help you.

Defining Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment 

What is quid pro quo sexual harassment? The term “quid pro quo” means “this for that.” Generally speaking, quid pro quo sexual harassment occurs when an employer (or a manager, or supervisor) makes an offer or promise to an employee for a benefit in exchange for a sexual favor or service, or threatens an employee with adverse consequences if they do not comply with a request for a sexual favor or service.

Promising or Offering Benefits or Special Favors 

Some forms of quid pro quo harassment involve a supervisor promising an employee a benefit if the employee agrees to a sexual request or favor. For example, the supervisor or manager might promise the employee a better schedule, a raise, or other similar benefits if they agree to the supervisor’s sexual advances or requests.

Threatening Adverse Consequences

 Quid pro quo sexual harassment can also occur when a supervisor threatens an employee with adverse consequences if the employee does not agree to comply with the supervisor’s request or demand for sexual favors or the supervisor’s sexual advances. For example, a supervisor might tell an employee they will face demotion or termination, or a less favorable set of vacation days, if they do not submit to the supervisor’s advances.

Implicit or Explicit 

Requests or demands for sexual favors, or sexual advances, as well as promises or threats, can be implicit or explicit. An employer or supervisor does not need to expressly state that an employee will experience a specific adverse consequence for failing to welcome the sexual advances, but rather can imply that the employee will experience adverse consequences. In short, to have an actionable quid pro quo harassment case, you do not need to have experienced direct, overt, and explicit actions. A supervisor’s behavior may be subtle or implicit and still rise to the level of unlawful sexual harassment.

Contact Our Palm Beach Gardens Sexual Harassment Lawyers 

If you have any concerns about sexual harassment in your workplace, you should know that sexual harassment is an unlawful form of sex discrimination and that you can speak with an experienced Palm Beach Gardens sexual harassment lawyer at Sconzo Law Office about taking action. Whether your employer, or a supervisor or manager, has engaged in any type of quid pro quo sexual harassment, even if you have declined offers or favors, it is important to seek legal advice. Do not hesitate to get in touch with our firm to learn more about the various ways in which sexual harassment manifests in the workplace and the steps you can take to stop it and to seek a remedy for the harassment you have experienced.




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