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Patrick, Esq.
Patrick, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 12174
Experience:  Significant experience in all areas of employment law.
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The office manager at my office grabbed both my shoulders

Customer Question

The office manager at my office grabbed both my shoulders and shook me vigorously while saying do not touch me. I sent a complaint to the managing partner at our Dr.'s office as well as the CEO of the company. This happened 12/9, sent letter on 12/19 and receieved the first response from the managing partner on 1-3 saying do not address questions with the HR person and we will inform you when we have an answer we are investigating and it is confidential. The office manager is still at work. How long should I give them the working environment is hostile and makes it very hard for me to do my job effectively.
JA: Because employment law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?
Customer: Arizona
JA: Is the employment agreement "at will," union, full time or part time?
Customer: fulltime by our handbook I work 30 to 40 hours a week
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: I have worked here 16 years and this office manager has a history of bullying many. Many have left because of her and the managing partner has vocalized to a few that this woman has a protected position so learn to get along with her. Things get shoved under the rug always
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Patrick, Esq. replied 4 months ago.

Hello and thank you for entrusting me to assist you. My name is ***** ***** I will do everything I can to answer your question.

The law requires your employer to take reasonable steps to protect you from violence in the workplace. If you feel that your physical safety is at risk and your employer isn't doing what they should to keep you physically safe, you can file a complaint with OSHA. Beyond filing an OSHA complaint, you can sue this employee for battery, but unless you suffered actual physical injuries it is unlikely that a jury would award any significant damages, and you might even wind up spending more on the lawsuit than you ever stand to recover. You can get a restraining order against this person if you feel that you are at physical risk, but the tricky thing about that is your employer will now have two employees who can't work together, and they will have to choose who they want to keep. No law requires them to choose you simply because you were the one who got the restraining order.

I think all of this is to say that while there are technically legal remedies available to you, none will be all that practical or effective at addressing the true problem, which is that your manager acted inappropriately and should face discipline for it. No law requires your employer to discipline your manager, much less terminate them. You can only really accomplish this by persuading them that such action is appropriate. This means continuing to follow up on your complaint and explaining that the touching was highly inappropriate and unprofessional. Of course, you are also always free to leave this job in favor of other employment where your manager treats you with all the respect you deserve.

If I can clarify anything at all for you, please do not hesitate to ask. It is my pleasure to assist you further if necessary....

Expert:  Patrick, Esq. replied 4 months ago.

Hello again,

I just wanted to followup because this question was still open and I have not heard back from you. Was there anything more I can do to assist you? Did you get a chance to review my answer to your question? Please let me know....

Expert:  Patrick, Esq. replied 4 months ago.

Can you please let me know if you are getting my messages to you?