ANDERSON KILL P.C.

 


Attorneys and Counselors at Law

Attorneys and Counselors at Law

1251 Avenue of the Americas n New York, NY 10020

Telephone: 212-278-1000 n Fax: 212-278-1733

www.andersonkill.com

1251 AVENUE OF THE AMERICAS - NEW YORK, NY 10020
TELEPHONE: 212-278-1000 - FAX: 212-278-1733
www.andersonkill.com

Robert M. Horkovich

 rhorkovich@andersonkill.com

212-278-1322

Dear Colleague and Friend:

Re: Handling #MeToo Claims

I want to make you aware of the return to our firm of Dona Kahn, an experienced employment attorney, who focuses on discrimination laws, including allegations of sexual harassment and sexual hostile work environments. Dona, a former EEOC attorney, has tried more than 30 employment law jury trials and has conducted dozens of outside investigations of such claims.

The Weinstein accusations opened the floodgates to complaints of sexual harassment and assault, some several years old, and new revelations continue to pour out almost daily. Employers are faced with decisions on how to handle complaints of past unreported offenses, as well as current complaints, and with combating unfavorable press.

Federal, state and local laws generally provide that if an employer has a procedure or policy for receiving and investigating complaints of sexual or racial discrimination, and it takes prompt and remedial action, such action may constitute all or part of a valid defense to the complaint. Further, if an outside expert investigates the matter and the recommendation of the investigator is followed, punitive damages, available under discrimination laws, will generally not be awarded since the actions cannot be deemed to be willful disregard of the law, which is the basis for punitive awards.

In the current environment it is no longer prudent to rely on your own HR staff to investigate and remedy any situation alleged to be in violation of discrimination laws. The investigation should be done by an unbiased person.

Dona can be retained to investigate any complaint of discrimination you receive, including sexual harassment, and issue a report and recommendation. If the recommendation is acted upon, the employer will be deemed to have taken prompt and remedial action to correct any conduct of harassment, enhancing the chances of summary judgment should the matter be litigated and providing protection against punitive damage in the event of an adverse ruling.

Further, Dona can conduct sexual harassment workshops to make the employees aware of what may be deemed a violation of the applicable discrimination laws -helping to prevent future violations. All this will go far in controlling the damage resulting from these complaints.

Dona can be reached at 212-278-1812 or at dkahn@andersonkill.com should you wish to discuss this further.

Sincerely,

Robert M. Horkovich
Managing Partner
Anderson Kill
(212) 278-1322
rhorkovich@andersonkill.com