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Sexual Harassment Claims Not Subject to Arbitration

January 8, 2024

On September 1, 2021, new sexual harassment arbitration laws went into effect in Texas. These laws were enacted in response to concerns about the use of arbitration agreements to limit employees’ rights to seek justice for sexual harassment in the workplace.

Under the new laws, employers are prohibited from including mandatory arbitration agreements in contracts for sexual harassment claims. This means that employees who have experienced sexual harassment in the workplace have the option to pursue their claims in court rather than being forced to arbitrate.

Additionally, employers must now provide employees with a written notice of their right to opt out of arbitration for sexual harassment claims. This notice must be provided to employees at the time of hire or within the first 14 days of employment, and it must be in boldface type and contain specific language informing employees of their rights.

The new laws also prohibit retaliation against employees who choose to opt out of arbitration for sexual harassment claims. This ensures that employees are free to exercise their rights without fear of retaliation or other negative consequences.

These changes are significant for employees in Texas, as they help to ensure that victims of sexual harassment have access to justice and can seek redress in court. By prohibiting mandatory arbitration agreements for sexual harassment claims, Texas is taking a strong stance against sexual harassment in the workplace and promoting a safer and more respectful work environment for all employees.

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