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Our Boston, MA Sexual Harassment and Sexual Assault Lawyer Specialists Are Experts at Proving Liability in Massachusetts Sexual Harassment Cases and Sexual Assault Cases.

Sexual Harassment

Massachusetts has many laws that protect individuals from sexual harassment in the workplace. Those responsible for the abusive behavior can be found liable under a variety of Massachusetts statutes. If you were wrongfully terminated or demoted, your Massachusetts employer may be required to restore you to your job. Your employer may also owe you compensation for any lost wages or emotional distress that you experienced as a result of the Massachusetts sexual harassment.

While the following summary of Massachusetts statutes regarding Massachusetts sexual harassment may be useful in helping you decide whether to pursue a Massachusetts sexual harassment claim, it is best to consult with an experienced Boston, Massachusetts sexual harassment lawyer professional who is knowledgeable about the specifics of these laws. The Boston, MA sexual harassment attorneys at the Law Offices of Gilbert R. Hoy Jr. and Affiliates have the skills to recognize and utilize all of the applicable statutes to obtain justice for your Massachusetts sexual harassment claim. Call our Massachusetts sexual harassment discrimination lawyers today at 617-787-3700 or email us at info@gilhoylaw.com to set up a free and confidential initial consultation regarding your Massachusetts sexual harassment claim.

Most generally, pursuant to Section 4(16A) of Chapter 151B of the Massachusetts General Laws, it is unlawful for Massachusetts employers or their agents to sexually harass an employee. An employer’s agents include supervisors, other employees, and in some cases, customers.

Under Chapter 151B, Section 4(4A), it is illegal for any individual to intimidate, coerce, threaten or interfere with another person’s enjoyment of the rights enumerated in the chapter. This includes protection from Massachusetts sexual harassment and Massachusetts discrimination based on sex. According to this legal language, it can be inferred that individuals who prevent another person from experiencing a work environment free of hostility, humiliation or ridicule are liable to that person for damages that they cause.

As set forth in Chapter 151B, Section 4(5), it is unlawful for any individual, be it an employer, employee or a third party, to aid, abet, incite, compel or coerce actions prohibited by Massachusetts law. This means that Massachusetts employers, coworkers and customers can be held liable as an aider and abettor if they shared the intent of the principal offender to harass and understood their supporting role in denying the complainant their rights guaranteed under law. Furthermore, Massachusetts law also provides that inaction by an individual with an awareness of the Massachusetts sexual harassment, and an obligation and the authority to investigate or report the behavior, who intentionally failed to take remedial action, may be held liable for contributing to the complainant’s injury.

Massachusetts employers may be liable for harassment by employees with supervising authority.

Regardless of whether an employer is aware of inappropriate conduct, the employer is liable for Massachusetts sexual harassment of employees by managers and other individuals given supervisory authority. Massachusetts employers are vicariously liable for the actions of these supervisors because they placed the supervisors in a position of authority over subordinate employees. The supervisors thus legally serve as the agents of their employers. Supervisory authority may involve delegating tasks, evaluating job performance, recommending employment decisions and other responsibilities which supervisors may manipulate in order to attempt to obtain sexual favors from other employees.

Additionally, according to the doctrine of apparent authority, Massachusetts employers may still be held liable for Massachusetts sexual harassment even if the alleged harasser was not officially named as a supervisor or if the supervisor lacked real authority. If the harasser presents him or herself as an authority figure and the employee reasonably believes that the harasser has supervisory authority, the employer may be found liable for neglecting to maintain proper relationships and positions of authority among his or her employees.

A Massachusetts employer may also be liable for Massachusetts sexual harassment by coworkers who lack supervisory authority if the employer knew or should have known about the inappropriate conduct and did not take effective, prompt and reasonable action to resolve the situation.

Massachusetts employers may be liable for Massachusetts harassment by patients, customers and clients.

Massachusetts employers may also be held liable for Massachusetts sexual harassment conducted by non-employees, including patients, customers, clients and independent contractors, in situations where the employer was aware, or should have known, about the inappropriate conduct and failed to take reasonable, prompt and effective actions to remedy the situation.

Massachusetts employers themselves may be liable for their own inappropriate behavior.

Massachusetts employers are people that you look up to in your job, and those whose guidance and example you follow in order to perform your best in the workplace. However, if your Massachusetts employer threatens to terminate your employment if you do not perform a sexual favor, or makes sexual comments that leave you feeling offended and violated, you may feel unable to fulfill your job duties. In such instances of Massachusetts sexual harassment, owners, presidents and partners closely tied to the business entity, may be held personally liable for his or her inappropriate conduct.

There are also certain rules that employers are legally obligated to follow in writing a Massachusetts sexual harassment policy and making the policy available and known to their employees. Employers who fail to meet these requirements may face legal action and are often liable for greater damages to their employees who have experienced Massachusetts sexual harassment in the workplace.

The Boston, Massachusetts Law Offices of Gilbert R. Hoy, Jr. and Affiliates is a respected group of some of the best attorneys from some of the best law offices in New England, including expert sexual harassment lawyers, who have been personally selected by Attorney Hoy because of their reputation, skill, experience and expertise. Many of the Boston, Massachusetts attorneys on our team have been regularly selected and recognized as among the very best attorneys in Massachusetts and, indeed, our country. Our expert, seasoned and highly skilled team of Boston, Massachusetts sexual harassment trial attorneys specialize in Massachusetts sexual harassment claims. Our Massachusetts team of Boston's best sexual harassment claims lawyers is here to help you, twenty four hours a day, seven days a week. Please call our Massachusetts sexual harassment lawyers today at 617-787-3700 or email us at info@gilhoylaw.com.

Sexual Assault

In order for an individual to be held responsible for sexual assault, the state must first prove that he or she touched some part of the victim’s body in a sexual manner. Once the sexual contact has been established, the state must then prove that the victim did not consent to the act. Sexual assault includes a number of acts, such as rape, attempted rape, unwanted sexual contact or threats, sexual abuse, sexual misconduct, sodomy, fondling and indecent exposure.

Consent

Consent in regards to sexual assault has been defined as a conscious and voluntarily agreement to engage in sexual activity with another.

It is a general rule that if the victim consented to the sexual contact, the offender will not be considered to have committed sexual assault. However, there are circumstances where the victim’s consent may be void, such as where:

  • The offender used force or threats

  • The victim was unconscious

  • The victim was under the influence of drugs or alcohol

  • The victim was a minor

  • The victim was suffering from a mental illness

Sexual assault cases can involve a number of different types of individuals. The assaulter may be a stranger, an acquaintance, a friend or even a family member. Even if you have previously engaged in voluntary sexual activity with a person, he or she can still be held responsible for sexual assault on a later occasion.

If you have previously engaged in sexual activity with someone, it is even more important that you make your consent or lack of consent incredibly clear to your partner on a subsequent occasion. Additionally, even if you have had no prior sexual relationship with the offender, it is still important to express your lack of consent in clear, understandable and unmistakable terms. The clearer the lack of consent is to the perpetrator, the more likely it is that he or she will be held responsible for sexual assault.

Massachusetts Sexual Assault Law

Under Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 265, Section 22(a), rape is defined as occurring when an individual “has sexual intercourse or unnatural sexual intercourse with a person, and compels such person to submit by force and against his will, or compels such person to submit by threat of bodily injury and if either such sexual intercourse or unnatural sexual intercourse results in or is committed with acts resulting in serious bodily injury, or is committed by a joint enterprise, or is committed during the commission or attempted commission of an offense.”

Massachusetts recognizes sexual acts involving vaginal, oral or anal sex. As a result, traditional rape is not the only illegal act attached to the statute. Sexual intercourse does not actually have to occur in order for sexual assault to occur.

Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 265, Section 22(b) explains the punishment attached to a rape conviction. It states that “whoever has sexual intercourse or unnatural sexual intercourse with a person and compels such person to submit by force and against his will, or compels such person to submit by threat of bodily injury, shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for not more than twenty years; and whoever commits a second or subsequent such offense shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for life or for any term or years.” The punishment can be increased, however, if an offender commits rape against a child under 16 years of age or commits aggravated rape against an adult, then he or she can face life in prison after the first offense.

If you or a loved one has been the victim of Massachusetts sexual assault, you are likely entitled to a substantial monetary recovery. Our Boston attorneys are experts in maximizing the recovery of money damages if you have been sexually assaulted. Let our Boston sexual assault law firm help you.

If you or a loved one has been sexually assaulted, please contact our highly experienced Boston, MA sexual assault attorneys at the Law Offices of Gilbert R. Hoy, Jr. and Affiliates at (617) 787-3700.

Call Our Boston, MA Sexual Harassment and Sexual Assault Lawyer Experts 24/7 at 617-787-3700. Our Boston Attorneys Are Experts at Proving Liability in Massachusetts Sexual Harassment Cases and Massachusetts Sexual Assault Cases. Call Today. Your Needs Are Our Top Priority!
Call Our Boston, Massachusetts Sexual Harassment Lawyer Experts or Massachusetts Sexual Assault Attorney Specialists 24/7 at 617-787-3700 or Email Us at info@gilhoylaw.com. Our Boston Lawyers Are Just a Phone Call Away.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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