We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is Involved in a Sexual Harassment Lawsuit?

By Christopher John
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

A sexual harassment lawsuit generally involves a complaint, a response, discovery, and a trial. Some jurisdictions require filing a complaint with a governmental agency prior to filing a lawsuit. Sexual harassment is any unwelcome behavior of a sexual nature that is pervasive or severe. Examples include unwanted kissing, touching, sexual innuendos, or pictures of a sexual nature. Sexual harassment is a form of discrimination and most jurisdictions prohibit such conduct in the workplace.

Some jurisdictions require a person to file a formal complaint with a governmental agency before filing a sexual harassment lawsuit. In the U.S., the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is responsible for investigating and prosecuting claims of sexual harassment. Failure to file a complaint with the EEOC may prevent a person from pursuing a sexual harassment lawsuit in court. There are deadlines to file a complaint with the EEOC. Missing a deadline may result in losing important legal rights and remedies.

The laws and procedures for filing a sexual harassment lawsuit vary in each jurisdiction. A victim of sexual harassment should immediately confer with a lawyer knowledgeable in such cases. An experienced lawyer likely knows the best steps for protecting the rights of a victim. If required, a lawyer may help file a complaint with the appropriate governmental agency. Thereafter, a lawyer may file a lawsuit if the agency fails to resolve the matter to a victim’s satisfaction.

To file a sexual harassment lawsuit, a lawyer prepares a complaint. The complaint contains the plaintiff’s claims against a defendant and a request for money damages. The claims are allegations that the plaintiff must prove. The lawyer files the complaint with the court. A process server or a sheriff then serves the complaint along with a summons on the defendant.

Typically, a defendant has 30 days to file a response to the sexual harassment lawsuit. The response may be in the form of a motion or an answer. A motion is a request asking the court to take a specific action such as throwing out the complaint on various grounds such as failure to exhaust administrative remedies. An answer is a response that admits or denies each allegation stated in the complaint. A defendant’s answer may include counterclaims against the plaintiff.

Each party to a sexual harassment lawsuit may conduct discovery. Discovery is a process that allows each side to uncover information about the other side’s case. Discovery methods include depositions, interrogatories, and requests for admissions. A lawyer might use discovery to obtain documents from a company that failed to address claims of sexual harassment, for example.


Thereafter, the court conducts a trial, unless the parties settle the sexual harassment lawsuit. Each side presents its case by having witnesses testify and offering other types of evidence to the court such as documents or videos. A judge and/or a jury hears the case and makes a decision. The party losing the case may file an appeal. The entire process can take years, and the costs may be substantial for each side.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.