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How can a person represent themselves in a federal court in a sexuall harassment case?

Santa Clara, CA |

A female employee was assaulted/raped by supervisor over a period of 4plus yrs by the supervisor and sexually harassed by the supervisor friends for approximately 3 or more years. She reported to the company but they didn't do anything about it and shortly after reporting incident she was Spat on while on duty she is a bus driver. A customer got on the bus and spat on her and said enjoy fragrance. She believe one of the perpetrators got revenge on her in particular she believes it was the supervisor because of threats. Also, shortly after another female employee told victim that she had been sexually assaulted/raped on wmn bathroom and she reported it to company and they tried to blame her and twist her words and only gave perpetrator 30day suspension. This person also assaulted victim.

Attorney Answers 4


  1. By learning the law and civil procedure. It is probably wise to consult with an employment law attorney. Why would anyone want to represent herself? If she has a good case, many attorneys would be willing to represent her.


  2. Have you reported these incidents to the police? What you describe is criminal behavior. You should also consult with an employment attorney.

    My answers to questions posted on AVVO are intended to provide general information only, and are not intended to be legal advice. Employment law issues typically require a careful case-by-case analysis. Consequently, if you feel that you need legal advice, I would encourage you to consult in person with an employment attorney in your area.


  3. Federal court, in my view, is a particularly difficult place to represent yourself. Federal court judge can be very, very strict, and it's quite different from being in state court. I agree with Ms. Karila, that if she has a good case she should be able to find a good employment law attorney to handle it. Here’s a link to the California Employment Lawyers Association website where she can search for an employment law attorney in her area. CELA attorneys represent employees. Best of luck...

    http://www.cela.org/

    THESE COMMENTS MUST NOT BE CONSIDERED LEGAL ADVICE. Comments made on websites such as Avvo.com are provided for information purposes only, and you should not base a decision to act or refrain from acting based upon this answer. The only way to determine how the law may apply to your particular situation is to consult with an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction. Answering this question does not create an attorney-client relationship or otherwise require further consultation. . That relationship is established by the execution of a written agreement for legal services. Also, see Avvo's terms and conditions of use, specifically item 9, incorporated by this reference.


  4. If the case is as you have stated, there are dozens of very qualified employment attorneys who should be willing to take your case on a contingency basis. You simply need to take the time necessary to find one that you want to work with.

    The question you need to ask yourself is whether the case is worth the time you need to spend to find the right attorney? The time you will take trying to handle the case yourself will dwarf the time it should take you to find a very qualified attorney willing to handle the matter for you. If attorneys are not taking your case, then there are obviously issues that you are not disclosing in this post. Good and experienced attorneys are always looking for good cases, so if they are turning your case down it is either because you are not presenting the case well to them, or because there are serious issues you are not disclosing here.

    Finally, the decision to go to federal court is often not up to the plaintiff, but a good plaintiff's attorney can often prevent removal to federal court if there is a legitimate secondary defendant that can be sued to defeat diversity jurisdiction. You should avoid federal court if you can. The laws and procedure in federal court are generally not as favorable to an employment plaintiff as state court will be.

    You need to find and hire an attorney. You will be eaten alive by company attorneys who are experienced and well financed. Do not destroy your case by simply not taking the time to find a good attorney with whom you can work.

    Good luck to you.

    This answer should not be construed to create any attorney-client relationship. Such a relationship can be formed only through the mutual execution of an attorney-client agreement. The answer given is based on the extremely limited facts provided and the proper course of action might change significantly with the introduction of other facts. All who read this answer should not rely on the answer to govern their conduct. Please seek the advice of competent counsel after disclosing all facts to that attorney. This answer is intended for California residents only. The answering party is only licensed to practice in the State of California.

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