In Stoica v. Phipps, 2018 WL 1226045 (N.Y. Sup. Ct. N.Y. Cty. Index No. 153834/2017, March 8, 2018) (J. Lebovits), the court, inter alia, denied defendants’ motion to dismiss plaintiff’s hostile work environment sexual harassment claims under the New York State and City Human Rights Laws.It also held that plaintiff sufficiently alleged various other claims, including for unpaid overtime wages and failing to provide the wage statements required by Labor Law § 195.
The court summarized the law:
Generally, isolated remarks or occasional episodes of harassment will not merit relief under New York State Executive Law or the New York City Administrative Code. … To state a cause of action sufficiently, the alleged conduct must be both objectively and subjectively offensive, hostile, or abusive to a reasonable person. … If the plaintiff’s complaint alleges specific serious and offensive acts by an immediate supervisor, the plaintiff has sufficiently stated a cause of action alleging hostile work environment sexual harassment.
Applying the law, the court proceeded to explain how and why plaintiff’s complaint satisfied this standard:
Plaintiff’s complaint alleges defendant J. Phipps would make comments about plaintiff’s body in a sexually explicit manner almost daily. Plaintiff also alleges that defendant would sneak into plaintiff’s bedroom at night to sleep next to plaintiff to convince plaintiff to engage in sexual activity with her. Plaintiff alleges that when this behavior was objected to, defendant would threaten to fire plaintiff, kick her out of the home, and have her deported. Plaintiff’s complaint alleges that because of this behavior, plaintiff suffered extreme mental anguish, emotional distress, anxiety, depression and humiliation.
Plaintiff’s complaint alleges several objectively offensive acts by one of plaintiff’s immediate supervisors. Moreover, plaintiff’s complaint states that these acts were ongoing and negatively impacted the work environment. Defendants claim that these allegations are too outrageous and incredible to be believed but facts alleged in plaintiff’s complaint are accepted as true and given the benefit of every favorable inference.
|↩1||It also held that plaintiff sufficiently alleged various other claims, including for unpaid overtime wages and failing to provide the wage statements required by Labor Law § 195.|