A woman holds her hand up to a man leaning suggestively across the desk from her.

What Is Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment?

Most people will do almost anything to advance in their careers or keep their jobs. To many, that means picking up extra projects, staying later hours, working through holidays, and other ways of putting their can-do hat on to prove they’re worthy of a raise, promotion, or enduring a round of layoffs.

Unfortunately, employers and managers can take advantage of this drive by asking – or requiring – for more than an employee’s best work. Most people know how to recognize sexual harassment or why they should report it, but there’s one particularly insidious form of sexual harassment that can often go overlooked: quid pro quo sexual harassment.

Latin for “this for that,” quid pro quo sexual harassment involves offering an employee anything at work in exchange for a sexual favor. Whether the requestor makes the sexual element of the transaction explicit or merely implies it doesn’t matter – any kind of offer is unlawful, and an employee can hold the requestor and company liable for damages.

Examples of quid pro quo sexual harassment include:

  • A supervisor offering a recommendation for an employee’s promotion in exchange for a sexual favor.
  • An employer implying a sexual favor will guarantee job security during an anticipated round of layoffs.
  • A manager requiring a sexual favor to consider a request for a raise.
  • An employer offering favorable projects in exchange for sexual favors

Can I Get Fired for Reporting Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment?

If you’re enduring this type of sexual misconduct or have learned of an employee who is, you may fear losing your job by reporting it. As with other forms of sexual harassment, discrimination, and whistleblowing in the workplace, you cannot be legally terminated for reporting unlawful activity.

Quid pro quo sexual harassment is unlawful. If your employer threatens to fire you or does so because you have reported it or said you would report it, you may be able to hold your employer liable for retaliation or wrongful termination as well.

Get an Attorney’s Help

An employment law attorney who represents employees can help victims of quid pro quo sexual harassment hold responsible parties accountable for their abuse. No one should have to endure such mistreatment at work without exploring their options to seek legal recourse.

At Hoosier Law Firm, PLLC, we help employees seek justice after an employer or supervisor has taken advantage of them at work. We’ll support you throughout your claim process and work to maximize your settlement or trial award. Don’t suffer in silence if you’re a victim of quid pro quo sexual harassment – reach out to us for help today.

Schedule a free consultation with our firm by contacting us online or calling (800) 455-8721.