Everyone in California has the right to enjoy a working environment that is free from hostility. Unfortunately, many individuals find their work settings to be less than ideal. If a person feels he or she is commonly subjected to a hostile work environment, there is something that can be done about it. However, it is first necessary to determine if what is going on meets the legal criteria required to take action.

A lot of people have co-workers and managers with whom they do not get along. This does not constitute a hostile work environment. By definition, a hostile work environment is one where the actions, behavior or communication of co-workers or bosses make it impossible to do one’s job. A hostile work environment in one where discrimination, harassment or retaliation is a problem.

In order to take legal action, one must have reported the problem. There needs to be evidence that one is in a protected class and has been the victim of discrimination. There needs to be evidence that one’s complaint was not reported or not taken seriously. Finally, there needs to be evidence that the problem is affecting one’s work performance.

Under the right circumstances, one may file claims with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to have one’s employer investigated. One may also file civil suits against the person responsible for the hostile work environment and one’s employer in an effort to seek compensation for any losses suffered. California residents who are not sure if they have a case or who would like help pursuing relief can turn to an experienced employment law attorney for assistance.