What Is a Hostile Work Environment?

“Hostile work environment” is an employment law term most people are familiar with but may not really understand what it entails. Like other employment law terms, such as harassment and discrimination, it’s important to have a clear grasp of what these all mean and how they may – or may not – apply to a situation you’ve experienced at work.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is the authority on what a hostile work environment is, and it’s not as self-explanatory as it may seem. It takes more than your boss going on a tirade or feeling like you’re on the cusp of getting fired for any minor slip-up. Such behaviors and policies can certainly feel hostile, but they may not be illegal. Annoyances, petty actions, and isolated incidents typically lack sufficient legal grounds for a lawsuit.

The same may not be true when someone is engaging in discrimination that is so severe or pervasive that it makes it difficult or impossible for someone to do their job. When discrimination causes a hindrance to someone else’s work performance, the EEOC may regard the situation as a hostile work environment.

The discrimination may be any form of harassing speech or behavior that targets race, sex, age, religion, or another protected characteristic. Sexual harassment is regarded as a form of sex discrimination, which is why the creation of a hostile work environment is often considered in such lawsuits.

Do You Need Legal Assistance?

If you believe you are working in a hostile work environment, reach out to our attorney at Limonjyan Law Group for help. Schedule a consultation with us today so you can have an opportunity to tell us more about your situation and your legal concerns.

Get the help you need from us today! Contact Limonjyan Law Group online or call (213) 277-7444 to reach someone from our firm.