Quid pro quo Attorneys in San Francisco, California

Quid pro quo means "something for something."

Quid pro quo harassment occurs in the workplace when a manager or other authority figure offers or merely hints that he or she will give the employee something (a raise or a promotion) in return for that employee's satisfaction of a sexual demand. This also occurs when a manager or other authority figure says he or she will not fire or reprimand an employee in exchange for some type of sexual favor. A job applicant also may be the subject of this kind of harassment if the hiring decision was based on the acceptance or rejection of sexual advances.

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To Make a Claim

To prevail on a quid pro quo claim, a claimant (the plaintiff in a lawsuit) must be able to prove the following elements to a jury:

  • Plaintiff was an employee of, or applied for a job with, company X (the defendant).
  • The alleged harasser, an officer or employee of company X, made unwanted sexual advance to the plaintiff, or engaged in other unwanted verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature.
  • Certain job benefits were conditioned, by words or conduct, on the plaintiff's acceptance of the alleged harasser's sexual advances or conduct; or that employment decisions affecting the plaintiff were made based on his or her acceptance or rejection of the alleged conduct.
  • At the time of the alleged conduct, the alleged harasser was a supervisor or agent for company X.
  • The plaintiff was harmed by the alleged conduct.

At the end of the day, courts are looking for proof that the underlying sexual harassment resulted in a significant employment action, such as the plaintiff being fired or suspiciously passed over for a promotion.