Employers are facing unprecedented challenges related to conduct in the workplace and sexual harassment/sexual assault in particular. Best-in-class employers must be prepared to get in front of these issues from every angle: legal, employee relations, investment relations and press/social media.

Perkins Coie lawyers routinely work with clients—either through their in-house lawyers or directly with human resource professionals or other managers—to help navigate these sensitive situations.

Even the most prepared employers need support. Perkins Coie works as trusted advisors to respond to specific questions, address and investigate troublesome allegations, guide the enforcement of client policies and provide preventive and remedial training for employees at all levels, from nonsupervisory personnel through C-suite executives.

Workplace Harassment Taskforce

From the initial appearance of an issue, our cross-practice Workplace Harassment Taskforce mobilizes immediately to advise clients. Sexual harassment and/or sexual assault claims can have an impact at all levels of a company. We are able to swiftly deploy resources in our Labor & Employment, Corporate, White Collar and Investigations, Privacy and Insurance Recovery practices to assist clients who want to:

  • Ensure internal policies, practices and training programs are sufficient and effective
  • Strategize with counsel about best practices for internal complaints management, corporate governance and insurance coverage
  • Provide impactful in-person training for C-suite, upper management and/or nonsupervisory personnel about preventing and correcting sexual harassment, gender discrimination and retaliation in the workplace
  • Review and analyze past claims and investigations
  • Investigate current claims and take appropriate remedial action
  • Respond to federal or agency claims

Additionally, should allegations evolve into litigation, we have a trial-ready team of litigators with significant experience defending these allegations in court.

Investigations Counsel

Should a situation escalate to an internal investigation, it is essential to ensure that these highly sensitive investigations are handled discreetly and appropriately. Our attorneys have extensive experience directing and/or conducting internal investigations necessitated by internal complaints, demand letters, agency claims or lawsuits. We carefully analyze and balance our clients’ needs and concerns when advising how to approach and structure an investigation. Each case is unique.

Perkins Coie focuses on helping clients establish legal defenses, preserve the attorney-client privilege and, most importantly, properly address and resolve the workplace misconduct to protect employee morale and productivity. Acting swiftly and appropriately is critical for achieving a successful outcome. Additionally, we have access to resources in crisis communications and related areas to help clients manage reputational risks triggered by allegations or claims.