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What does the term quid pro quo mean in sexual harassment cases?

Quid pro quo is a Latin term that means "something for something" or "this for that." In legal terms quid pro quo sexual harassment occurs in the workplace when a person with authority, promises something to an employee or a job applicant in return for a sexual favor. Quid pro quo harassment can be stated outright or merely implied or hinted at.

To further clarify this type of sexual harassment, here are a few examples for you to consider:

-- Stating or implying that an employee will receive protection from termination or reprimands in return for some form of sexual activity

-- Stating or implying that an employee will receive a raise, promotion or other benefit in return for sexual favors

-- Touching a job applicant or an employee in an appropriate manner and then implying or stating such activity is necessary for employment

These behaviors are against the law and no employee in Florida or elsewhere in the nation is bound to acquiesce to an employer's sexual demands. However, many employees do give in because they need their jobs or they feel trapped in the situation.

The law offers victims an opportunity to be compensated by filing a sexual harassment claim. If successful, it is possible for the victim to recover compensation for damages such as lost wages or benefits and sometimes damages for emotional distress. Unfortunately, the burden of proof lies with the employee, which can be challenging in some cases.

Many victims of workplace sexual harassment in Florida have found that working with an employment attorney strengthens their claims. Along with providing guidance based on actual experience, a lawyer has resources he or she can use to support your case.

Source: FindLaw, "What is Quid Pro Quo Harassment?," accessed April 21, 2016

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