Employment Lawyers Can Answer Your Employment Law Questions
I work for a company that began as a startup and now has 300+ employees. When I first started, everything seemed fine. Now, 6 months in, I'm starting to notice my boss, the top salesperson and girlfriend of the CEO, is berating and belittling my coworkers and myself more frequently. She has become so bad that I have left work with panic attacks and increased anxiety several times over the past few weeks. In addition, we share an office and her boyfriend (the CEO) comes in and kisses her, whispers inappropriate things in her ear, etc.) in front of me, this makes me feel extremely uncomfortable, but I know if I say anything they will make my job much more difficult. In a company of 300 employees, 74 left the company last year because of how miserable the work environment is. The company is largely comprised of friends and family of the owners, who are ill-qualified to do their jobs. The worst part is, few people stand up and do anything for fear of losing their jobs. HR is not even able to enforce regular rules - no PDA in the work environment, no drinking at on-site work events. I was even made fun of for taking a moment of silence on Good Friday because I'm a Catholic and that is a day of sorrow for us (despite the fact that she is supposedly Catholic too). I'm planning on leaving the company anyway because I cannot handle how she treats people, however, there are many people there who I have come to care for and I hate to think of them stuck there with her tyranny "running" the company and using the CEO as a mere puppet.
I would like to know if I have any grounds to pursue legal action against the company, ie. hostile work environment, duress, etc. The CEO, is permitting his mistress-turned-girlfriend to run the company from his back pocket and she treats people like garbage.
DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.
The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).