National Origin Harassment FAQs

Facing Harassment at Work Due to Your National Origin?

A Los Angeles National Origin Harassment Attorney Is Here to Answer Your Questions

The attorneys at YMS have decades of experience litigating claims involving discrimination, harassment and retaliation. We understand the seriousness of harassment based on your ethnicity, ancestry and national origin and will work tirelessly to protect your rights and advance your legal interests.

Being harassed at work is never easy. However, you can better prepare yourself by learning more about California and federal employment law. To that end, our Los Angeles national origin harassment attorneys are providing you with important information.

California National Origin Harassment Frequently Asked Questions

What Constitutes Harassment Based on National Origin?

When a person is harassed due to his or her national origin, both California and federal law have been violated. National origin refers to the country where a person was born or the country where a person’s ancestors lived. A national origin group shares a common language, a common culture, a common ancestry or other similar social characteristics. A person could be harassed because:

  • He or she was married to a person of a national origin group
  • He or she attends or participates in churches, schools, mosques or temples associated with a national origin group
  • His or her physical appearance or name is associated with a particular nationality
  • He or she has a membership or association with an ethnic promotion group

Simple teasing, offhand comments or an isolated incident that sufficiently offends, humiliates, distresses or intrudes upon its victim, so as to disrupt the victim’s emotional tranquility in the workplace, affect the victim’s ability to perform the job as usual, or otherwise interfere with and undermine the victim’s personal sense of well-being may constitute harassment. A harasser could be your employer, a supervisor, a co-worker or a client or customer.

What State and Federal Laws Protect Me From Harassment Due to My National Origin?

Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, any offensive conduct, such as ethnic slurs, which create a hostile work environment based on national origin are prohibited. The California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) also makes it illegal for your employer to harass you due to your national origin. U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals and authorized non-citizens are all protected from harassment on the basis of national origin.

How Difficult Is It to Prove Harassment Based on National Origin?

Unfortunately, proving national origin harassment may be difficult. Frequently, the perpetrators deny the claim, or they claim that they did not intend to harm you because they were just joking. That is why it is very important for you to consult an experienced employment harassment lawyer to evaluate your options and map out a plan to establish your claims for you. Frequently, an employer who harasses an employee based on their national origin, might also discriminate against them by treating them differently. Examples of negative treatment include:

  • Failing to receive a promotion or raise due to harassment
  • Receiving a demotion or having your employment terminated
  • Consistent remarks about an individual’s appearance, hair, clothing or speech.

These examples could also support your claims of harassment.

What Actions Can I Take to Ensure My National Origin Harassment Claim Holds Up in Court?

Direct evidence of harassment can include verbal or written statements by witnesses who either saw that you were treated unfairly due to your national origin or who directly witnessed harassment based on national origin, leading to adverse employment consequences.

If a Client or Customer Engages in Harassment Due to My National Origin, Can I File a Claim Against That Person?

Customers, clients or other non-employees can be the source of a valid harassment claim if they are reported to HR or to a supervisor by the employee. Employers should take claims of harassment by non-employees (like clients or customers) just as serious as they would if it were another employee. Courts have gone so far as to hold employers responsible, even if a third party’s harassment took place outside of the company premises, as long as a connection to the company exists. In a non-criminal context, a victim of national origin harassment can sue the harasser in a private civil lawsuit, alleging the harassment constitutes discrimination.

What Are the Legal Consequences of National Origin Harassment in the Workplace?

As noted, if the national origin harassment results in a hostile workplace or results in adverse employment consequences, then it will go through the normal channels of filing a discrimination claim. Otherwise, the harasser may be civilly sued.

Contact a Los Angeles National Origin Harassment Attorney for Legal Advice

Everyone is entitled to live and work in an environment free of discrimination, harassment and retaliation. If you are experiencing harassment due to your national origin, then you should consider pursuing legal action. Contact a Los Angeles national origin harassment attorney at YMS today at (310) 919-0091 for a free initial consultation. You can also contact us online and provide us with information about your case.


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