In line with the legal remedies mentioned above, the harassed employee would be entitled to lawfully terminate their employment contract and claim all statutory benefits (among others severance pay, unused holiday pay, pay for any overtime work performed, other outstanding amounts such as bonuses) if the employer has failed to take precautions following the occurrence of a case of harassment.
Where the employer has failed to prevent harassment and has acted negligently in this respect, the employee may be able to claim non-material damages as well based on the failure of the employer to fulfil its duty of care
In organisations, which employ 20 or more employees, an internal reporting system must be established, and a dignity officer duly appointed. Complaints can be made (and resolved) internally by the dignity officer.
If such an option is unavailable or if the issue was not satisfactorily resolved within a set timeframe, the employee can seek protection before the courts. In certain cases, the employee can stop further work with the employer, until adequate protection is granted, either by the employer or the courts.
In court proceedings, the burden of proof lies on the employer, i.e. the employer must prove that there was no conduct constituting sexual harassment against the employee.
The employee can make a request to the court: (i) to make a finding that the conduct amounted to sexual harassment ; (ii) to prohibit all activities which constitute harassment, i.e. to resolve the harassment case and its consequences; (iii) to award damages incurred by the violation of the employees’ rights in accordance with the applicable civil law; (iv) to publicise the court decision which made a finding of harassment.
The employee can also make a request for payment of all due but unpaid salary (together with statutory interest) if he/she has stopped working during the court proceedings. Additionally, if a finding of sexual harassment is made, the employer will generally be obliged to pay all court fees incurred as part of the court proceedings.