Workers in Ohio and throughout the country who are subject to sexual harassment or other forms of discrimination may experience emotional distress. Symptoms of emotional distress may include anxiety, an inability to sleep or a reduced quality of life in general. Let’s take a look at how you may be able to obtain compensation for emotional distress caused by a hostile working environment.
How to prove that you experienced emotional distress
There are two methods by which you may prove that emotional distress was caused by events that took place at work. First, you can testify on your own behalf during an employment law trial. Generally speaking, you don’t need to show that you sought treatment for anxiety or other mental health issues to obtain damages for mental distress. It may also be possible for friends or family members to talk about how workplace discrimination impacted your mental health.
Conversely, you can have a medical professional testify that you sought and received treatment for depression or some other mental health condition. Testimony from a medical professional can be helpful if you’re seeking a significant financial award from a previous employer.
Damages may be capped or otherwise limited by law
If you are making a Title VII claim, you can receive a maximum of $300,000 in emotional distress damages. However, a higher award may be available by filing a claim based on other state or federal laws. It is important to note that this type of award is not designed to punish an employer for its actions or to compensate you for stress related to filing a lawsuit. Finally, you cannot pursue emotional distress damages if you were terminated for a mixture of legitimate and discriminatory reasons.
An employment law attorney may be able to help you hold your employer responsible for its discriminatory conduct. In addition to a financial award for emotional distress, you may be entitled to compensation for lost wages and the value of lost benefits.