Attorney Paul Weiss, a Chicago class-action attorney, is facing new allegations that he sexually harassed employees working at his firm.  Several months ago Mr. Weiss faced charges  arising out of his alleged sexual harassment of six women employees, including a charge that he pulled down his pants in front of two different female employees.  The Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission says in an amended complaint, that after a young female attorney was hired, Mr. Weiss began making comments about her appearance and suggested that she wear a swimsuit to the office.

The complaint alleges that the associate resigned because Weiss made "constant and intolerable" comments to her.  Weiss continues to deny the allegations and claims that these allegations were made up because the associate was about to be fired.

In 1980, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission produced a set of guidelines for defining sexual harassment in the workplace.  One definition of sexual harassment involves unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature that has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual's work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment. 

Lawyers who litigate sexual harassment claims agree that compliance with the law simply boils down to one word:  respect.  If the culture of the workplace is one where everyone respects the feelings of other people, sexual harassment claims usually do not develop.
I think the court needs to review his professional conduct, and his ethical standards to decide whether to let him practice law. It might be harsh, but sexual harassment is not a case to be treated lightly. The lawyer's career is certainly at stake here.
by Jeanette Hayworth August 21, 2012 at 05:49 AM
I think it is also important for males in the workplace to know their limits, as the line between over friendliness and sexual harassment is thin. Unless you can be sure that jokes are taken in good humour and not result in a possible lawsuit, it is best to keep things professional.
by Mariov May 1, 2012 at 03:49 AM
What a boss! If I were his employee, I'll teach him a lesson.
by sexual harassment lawyer October 17, 2011 at 06:04 AM
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