Is it legal for company to fire an employee for sexual harassment but not fire other employees for the same offense?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Is it legal for company to fire an employee for sexual harassment but not fire other employees for the same offense?

I was fired. Another employee was given 30 days off and signed a last chance agreement that last a year also moved to another building. Another employee was only sent to diversity

classes each time he committed this same offense which was on four different occasions and never missed a day’s pay. Another employee was only suspended 30 days. Another employee only received a warning notice.

Asked on October 7, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, Kentucky


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Not all employees need be treated the same or even fairly. Therefore, your discharge was legal unless it violated the terms of an exisiting employment contract or union/collective bargaining agreement. Also, your treatment must not have constituted any form of legally actionable discrimination. In other words, was your being the only one fired the due to your race, religion, age (over 40), disability, etc.? If not, then again, no law has been broken. Your ex-employer's action was perfectly permissable.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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