“Unlike many civil lawsuits, sexual harassment claims include the risk of criminal prosecution. During civil discovery evidence may be introduced which is admissible for eventual criminal prosecution for a multitude of crimes: rape, assault and battery. The “stakes” are very high, tensions may run very hot and those involved may be willing to play “scorched earth” and seek the destruction of their adversary.
Given the risks involved it is best from the outset to evaluate settlement issues as follows:
1. Is it in the best interests of the parties to litigate the matter before a judge or jury or seek a private binding arbitration? The advantage of the jury trial is greater punitive damages exposure for the defendant which may play into the Plaintiff’s case more effectively. An arbitration may be better suited for the defendant who does not want the “gory details”to be part of a public record.”
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Our author, Gary S. Wolfe, has more than 34 years of experience, specializing in IRS Tax Audits and International Tax Planning/Tax Compliance, and International Asset Protection.