The last few months of 2017 were filled with stories of famous personalities throughout the entertainment, political, and media worlds experiencing falls from grace due to allegations of sexual misconduct – much of which reportedly occurred in the workplace – years and even decades prior. While employers and the court of public opinion are clearly unrestrained in what actions should be taken in response to reports of sexual harassment, obtaining financial recovery and other forms of relief in state court is another matter. In New Jersey, the applicable statute of limitation for bringing a sexual harassment claim is two years from the date of the “adverse employment action” that serves as the basis of the sexual harassment action, but that time may be extended under New Jersey’s “continuing violations theory.”
When the Statute of Limitations Period Begins in a NJ Sexual Harassment Case
New Jersey state employment law considers sexual harassment that occurs on the job as a type of discrimination against persons based on their gender. As such, New Jersey sexual harassment claims are brought pursuant to the “New Jersey Law Against Discrimination” or “LAD.”
Under LAD, a claim should be brought within two years of the date of the “adverse employment action,” meaning the date that the act of sexual harassment occurred. In New Jersey, sexual harassment includes both quid pro quo sexual harassment – meaning sexual advances that are made or requested in exchange for benefits on the job – as well as hostile work environment sexual harassment, which is when an employee is exposed to hostile, sexual, or abusive conduct because of his or her gender.
Using the Continuing Violations Theory to Bring Your NJ Sexual Harassment Suit
New Jersey employs the “continuing violations theory” in determining the statute of limitations for sexual harassment actions. What this means is that, where there is a pattern of sexual harassment conduct on the job, the court will look to the last day that an act of sexual harassment occurred in the pattern of the harassment as the day in which the two-year window to bring a suit begins.
Thus, if a worker was subjected to sexual harassment from December 2013 through June 2016, and the acts constituted a pattern of harassment, the employee would have until June 2018 to bring suit for all the acts of sexual harassment that occurred during that time.
Call a New Jersey Sexual Harassment Attorney Today
The experienced attorneys at SK Law have won over $90 million in compensation for our clients, and we are here to stand by your side as your allies and champions in winning the recovery you deserve from all potential defendants. If you have experienced sexual harassment on the job, do not hesitate to take action to preserve your claim and maximize your recovery. Contact us today to speak to one our attorneys for a free consultation on pursuing your claim.