Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment

There is a lot of talk these days about the word quid pro quo.
It means this for that. Quid pro quo sexual harassment is typically associated with a supervisor, manager, or company owner saying they will provide an employment perk if they are allowed to sexually harass the victim or obtain sex from them. The evidence may be that once the victim complains or indicates they will no longer tolerate the sexual harassment there is retaliation, a job termination, or workplace rules start being enforced differently.

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In order for there to be sexual harassment there does not need to be a quid prod quo. Many sexual harassers get a rise out of abusing their power by making unwanted sexual comments, or engaging in physical sexual harassment. These types of predators may not expect to get a date or sex from the employee they are sexually harassing. Additionally, many sexual harassers are not in a position of authority.

Lawsuits for the sexual harassment by coworkers on a coequal hierarchical footing as the employee are brought all the time. However, in order for the employer to be responsible for the sexual harassment, there must be prior and advanced knowledge of the sexual harassment. This means that somebody complained about the harasser at an earlier time, or the individual suing complained about the harassment and the harassment continued after they complained. Employers are not responsible for non-supervisory or higher sexual harassment they never knew about.

Call 951-367-1000 to Find Out if you can Sue for Sexual Harassment

Examples of Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment

"Welcome to the couch area of my Homewood Suite in Palm Desert. In order to avoid traffic and be fresh to take on witnesses and judges sometimes I arrive the night before a case."

This sounds legitimate. It is a lawyer explaining his practice of arriving to an out of town case the night before. But what if the lawyer was the supervisor of somebody at the law firm, and the post concluded with,

“I am in Room 1414. Stop by once you get in town. Let’s have a drink on the couch and see where things might lead.”

That is sexual harassment if it is unwelcome. It certainly sounds like an invitation to fool around.

Tomorrow I will depose victim 3 and 4 of a supervisor who is still employed after sexually harassing 3 women besides my client. He will also explain himself tomorrow and so will his manager.

Again, nothing unusual. But what if the lawyer added,

“If you don’t come to Room 1414 and have a drink plus with me tonight you will have to explain why you should get a bonus this year.”

That is a clear quid pro quo. And we all know what, “Drinks plus” might mean. Or do we? Without a good sexual harassment lawyer, the harasser might just get away saying that meant drinks and videos, and who knows what a conservative jury in Riverside might do.

“This is a big week for travel at my firm. One of my associates has been in Fresno all week trying a Federal religious discrimination case.”

This is innocuous. But what if the writer added,

“She’s got more curves than Route 66. I just know those curves will work magic on the Fresno jury.”

That’s inappropriate, but what if the female associate didn’t see it? Some sexual harassment cases involve inappropriate remarks made outside the victim’s presence.

As you can probably tell by now sexual harassment involves a lot of nuances and subject interpretations. Our lawyers have heard thousands of sexual harassment scenarios.

Contact our firm at 951-367-1000 to run a potential sexual harassment situation by us.


It is typical to hear about quid pro quo sexual harassment. It is also common to hear about sexual assaults. An assault, however, does not involve actual touching. A battery is actual touching. The correct word for the touching of intimate body parts is sexual battery. Sexual assault is when somebody thinks they are about to be touched, but they are not. Blocking movements may constitute assault. Attempts to touch a woman’s breasts is sexual assault. An attempt to kiss somebody by only making contact with the person’s mouth is assault, but not sexual assault because there was not an attempt to touch an intimate body part.

Sexual harassment cases involving actual or attempted touching are often the most serious of the sexual harassment lawsuits. The emotional trauma from being improperly touched, or almost touched may be thought of as worse than an annoying supervisor who made inappropriate comments about a body part. Our Riverside sexual harassment lawyers take all types of sexual harassment cases whether or not there is an actual or attempted touching, or just verbal or written conduct.

Because our Riverside sexual harassment law firm is so experienced in representing male and female victims of sexual harassment we will do everything within our power to make the litigation process as easy on you as possible. An inexperienced sexual harassment law firm will expose you to things that you do not need to be exposed to in order to prosecute your sexual harassment lawsuit. Please let us do our thing and get you the best possible result on your sexual harassment lawsuit as possible.