Our client instructed Setfords for a harassment claim under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997.
This claim could also have been brought as a claim for sexual harassment under the Equality Act 2010. However, under consultation with Setfords, the client declined to pursue such action, primarily because she did not have any legal expenses insurance to cover such fees.
However, Setfords offered the client No Win No Fee terms to pursue a harassment claim under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997.
The client’s case was based on a series of events at the Defendant employer’s Christmas party.
Throughout the dinner, the Managing Director asked a series of personal questions.
Our client, new to the business, did her best to deal with the questions politely.
However, the Managing Director continued with the personal inquisition.
During the evening, the Managing Director tried on a number of occasions to get our client to dance with him. Our client left the dancefloor to collect her coat, as she no longer wanted to be in that environment.
When our client returned to the office the following Monday, the Managing Director was in early and let her into the building and asked if “they could chat in his office”.
He said that he had heard our client was “upset on Friday evening”. Our client said she was not necessarily upset, but that she was uncomfortable at the way he had behaved, to which he interrupted and brushed her off.
Our client felt she was unable to raise a formal grievance bearing in mind that it was the Managing Director who had said and behaved in this way. She felt she had little choice but to resign.
Setfords were instructed to pursue a harassment claim and obtained medical evidence to show that our client had suffered a recognised, albeit transient, psychiatric injury due to the above event.
Liability was denied on the basis that the Managing Director denied all of the alleged events. Court proceedings were issued, and notwithstanding the denial of liability, the Defendant employer did enter into negotiations for settlement. Our client accepted the sum of £22,000 in full and final settlement of her harassment claim.