When sexual harassment becomes intolerable, a woman may quit her employment and sue for constructive discharge (forced resignation). Constructive discharge claims are in many respects like unfair firing claims and permit the same remedies, such as damages for emotional distress and lost wages. To establish a constructive discharge claim, a sexual harassment victim must show that the employer either intentionally created or knowingly permitted working conditions that were so “intolerable” or aggravated at the time of the employee’s resignation that a reasonable employer would realize that a reasonable person in the employee’s position would be compelled to resign.
Not only is sexual harassment illegal. The law also prohibits:
- Racial harassment
- Religious harassment
- Age-based harassment
- Harassment based on disability
- Harassment based on ethnicity or national origin
Most people are familiar with workplace sexual harassment claims. Harassment in professional, business, and educational relationships are also illegal.