Associate at Boutique Law Firm Recovers Damages

Jury Returns Verdict for Sexual Harassment of Female Attorney

A New York City jury has sent a message that sexual harassment of professional women won’t be tolerated. In a lawsuit filed by Alexandra Marchuk, an associate at the boutique law firm of Faruqi & Faruqi, the jury found in Ms. Marchuk’s favor, awarding compensatory and punitive damages. Marchuk testified that she had been “repeatedly harassed” by a partner in the firm while working as a first-year associate in the firm’s litigation department. She also told jurors that the partner had sexually assaulted her at the firm’s 2011 holiday party, and that she had experienced post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of the incident.

Under the law, sexual harassment can take two primary forms—quid pro quo sexual harassment or the creation of a hostile environment based on sex:

  • With quid pro quo (Latin for “this for that”) sexual harassment, the victim is promised or receives a job-related benefit in exchange for sexual favors, or is threatened with or given a job-related sanction or punishment for withholding sexual favors.
  • A hostile environment for sex can arise when businesses, business owners and management allow, condone, encourage or even engage in behavior the emphasizes or focuses on sex and sexual relations. Allowing dirty jokes, sexually suggestive or explicit pictures or images, off-color e-mails or communications, and even repeated requests for dates can create a hostile environment.

Attorneys for Marchuk were pleased with the verdict: women in the working world “owe Ms. Marchuk…a debt of gratitude for taking a stand…against employers and supervisors who create hostile work environments and abuse their power.”

Contact Leeds Brown Law, PC

The attorneys at Leeds Brown Law have extensive experience successfully protecting the rights of women throughout the New York metropolitan area who have been subjected to sexual harassment on the job. Call us at 516-873-9550 or 212-661-4370 (toll-free at 1-800-585-4658) or send us an e-mail to schedule a meeting.