When men and women work together, romantic relationships are bound to occur. Even rules that prohibit such relationships—at least between supervisors and subordinates—won’t stop that from happening. But an isolated affair isn’t a legal kiss of death.
If one rogue supervisor pursues a willing subordinate, that doesn’t mean other female employees can successfully sue, alleging a sexually hostile work environment based on perceived favoritism. In fact, before other employees can win a sexual harassment case, the workplace must be so permeated with romantic entanglements that it’s clear women are viewed as mere “playthings.”
A single affair—no matter how unfair it may seem to others not receiving special treatment—does not a hostile work environment make.
Recent case: Cindy and Michele worked for an insurance and risk (register to read more)company. They went to HR and complained that their boss was carrying on an affair with a co-worker wh...
- How to Fire an Employee the Legal Way: 6 Termination Guidelines
- Train bosses: Snap decisions almost always risky
- You don't have to police workplace banter, but don't let it escalate
- ADA warning for bosses: You're not qualified to diagnose employees' mental illness
- Is 'Incompatible Working Styles' A New Legal Defense?