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St. Louis Missouri Labor & Employment Law Firm | Sex Discrimination
Call Us Now : (314) 645-4100
MISSOURI LABOR AND EMPLOYMENT LAW
Sex Discrimination

Sex Discrimination In The State of Missouri

Proving Our Case

To establish that sex discrimination was a 'contributing factor' in your case, we must prove the following four elements:

  1. The employee was a member of a protected class (here, a particular sex or 'gender');
  2. The employee was qualified to perform her/her job;
  3. The employee suffered an adverse employment action; and
  4. The employee was treated differently than similarly situated females/males.

The fourth element of a sex discrimination case can also be met if the employee provides "some other evidence that would give rise to an inference of unlawful discrimination." Turner v. Gonzales, 421 F.3d 688, 694 (8th Cir. 2005).

What About The Sex Of The Employer/Offender?

The Missouri Human Rights Act, like Title VII in Federal Courts, prohibits sexual harassment "regardless of the sex of the claimant or the harasser. Gilliland v. Missouri Athletic Club, 273 S.W.3d 516, [fn8] (Mo.banc 2009). This means that an employee may be the same or different sex as the harasser or employer and that will not affect our ability to argue our four points above.

Williams v. Trans States, 281 S.W.3d 854 (Mo.App.E.D. 2009)

In Williams v. Trans States, the Court found that the female employee presented sufficient evidence based on inferences drawn from the circumstances of her sexual harassment and termination that she was wrongfully terminated for filing a complaint. The employee was successful based on the following evidence and arguments:

First, the employee presented evidence that she had a good work record prior to making a sexual harassment complaint, including positive feedback from management. Second, while the employer claimed that the employee was terminated due to a violation of company policies and her poor overall job performance, the employee presented evidence that a majority of the alleged performance issues occurred after her sexual harassment complaint. Third, despite the severity and frequency of the employee's alleged misconduct or discipline, the employer only once documented any misconduct or discipline. Fourth, the employee argued that that the timing of her termination after she filed a sexual harassment complaint demonstrated that she had been wrongly terminated.

Additionally, the Court considered evidence that other female employees had suffered a similar fate as the employee after suffering sexual harassment and filing a claim.

Importantly, in cases where the employee can show that the employer acted with an 'evil motive' in discriminating against an employee, the court may award punitive damages above and beyond what an employee might otherwise recover.

Consultation with Attorney Jason M. Finkes

For a consultation with Attorney Jason M. Finkes in St. Louis, Missouri, call (314) 645-4100 or by email at j This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it