Posted On: August 4, 2010 by Peter M. LaSorsa

Danger Of Making False Sexual Harassment Claim

There is a real danger to making a false sexual harassment claim against somebody. A jury this month rejected the sexual harassment and retaliation claims a paralegal made against her former boss, lawyer Thomas Ostly, instead awarding him $1.55 million in damages in his defamation counter-suit. That is a serious amount of money and should make people think long and hard about making up false information in an attempt to get some fast money by filing a sexual harassment lawsuit.

The jury after hearing testimony determined paralegal Allison Moreno, acted with malice and oppression, laying the groundwork for awarding Ostly punitive damages. Morena claimed Ostly fired her when she refused to continue a sexual relationship with him. She said she felt pressured to have sex with her boss, and that she did so to protect her job and her plan to attend law school. The jury did not believe her and instead ruled in favor of Ostly.

"The system is not to be used improperly," Ostly said.