Sexual Harassment in a Job Interview

Discrimination Lawyer

Job interviews can be extremely stressful and can cause a lot of anxiety for many people. This becomes especially true if the job applicant really needs a job or if they are are interviewing for their dream job.

Unfortunately, some employers use their power during an applicant’s interview process to cross professional boundaries by making sexual propositions or inappropriate comments, which puts the candidates in a tough spot. As a discrimination lawyer from a firm like Eric Siegel Law can explain, in addition to making the job applicant feel uncomfortable, having the interview turn into sexual harassment can cause the applicant to doubt their qualifications or withhold from applying to other similar opportunities out of fear they may be placed in the same situation.

By working with an experienced employment discrimination lawyer you can file a claim against the prospective company who sexually harassed you. Always look for a law firm that exhibits  dedication and experience, and a commitment to help you fight for your rights that matches your own.

Protections Against Inappropriate Propositions

Sexual harassment is a type of gender discrimination due to the fact it typically is based on someone’s gender. There are many laws (both federal and state) that make it illegal to to discriminate against all employees, including applicants going through the interview and hiring process.

It is recognized that when an applicant is going through the interview process, the employer is in a position of power. However, the interview process is to determine if the applicant is a good fit for the position, not for the employer to take advantage of this position of power by making unwanted sexual comments or advances. 

Throughout a job interview, the employer should never ask a candidate about:

  • Marital status
  • Age
  • Sexual orientation
  • Sexual preferences

Additionally, the interviewer should never make any physical contact with an applicant other than a handshake. The interviewer should not provide the candidate with any personal information about themselves or invite the candidate for dinner or drinks.

The entire interview should feel professional and simply focus on the position and if the candidate would be a good fit. If the interviewer begins asking the candidate any personal questions, asking for sexual favors, and commenting on the candidate’s appearance, these are all inappropriate and should be viewed as a red flag. It is important for the candidate to not accept a position if they feel uncomfortable throughout the interview process. 

Schedule a Consultation

If you believe you were discriminated against or sexually harassed during a job interview because of your gender, you may or may not have enough evidence to file a sexual harassment claim. While inappropriate for a professional interview, if your interviewer makes a few inappropriate jokes or offhand comments, it may not technically be illegal.

However, if you did not receive a position because of your gender or because you refused any sexual advances, you could have a reason to take legal action. Professional employment discrimination attorneys are compassionate professionals, and they understand that employers need to be held to proper standards. Contact an attorney to schedule a free consultation to better understand your options.