Posted On: May 16, 2009 by

Illinois House Bill 3794 Will Affect Sexual Harassment Cases

Illinois House Bill ("HB") 3794 would add a new section to the Illinois Code of Civil Procedure--8-2801. The passage of this bill will be good news for sexual harassment plaintiffs and their attorney's. The new statutue would prohibit the admission of any evidence to prove an alleged victim (plaintiff) engaged in other sexual behavior or to prove a victim's sexual predisposition in civil cases.

There are two exceptions--first the evidence of specific instances of sexual behavior by the plaintiff would only be admissible for the purpose of proving the plaintiff consented to the alleged sexual harassment. Second, any evidence of specific instances of sexual behavior by the plaintiff, offered to prove that a person other than the accused was the source of physical evidence would be admissible. Physical evidence could be the source of the injury, or semen as examples.

The bills sponsor, Illinois State Representative Julie Hamos said "increasingly, those survivors (sic of sexual violence) are filing civil lawsuits to gain justice."

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