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A LAWSUIT FOR LAWSUIT—A SEXUAL HARASSMENT CASE TURNS INTO INSURANCE BATTLE

Posted by Kashif Haque | Nov 11, 2014 | 0 Comments

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Inspection

In 2012, Roxanna Sevilla, Maria Orozco, and Rosa Isela Gonzalez filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles County alleging gender discrimination, sexual harassment, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and false imprisonment against their employer, Jon Davler Inc.

In the complaint, the plaintiffs allege that one day, supervisor Christine Yang found a used sanitary napkin and blood in the toilet area of the women's restroom. Angered by the mess, Yang approached the plaintiffs and others in their department and accused them all of being “dirty.”

She then demanded to know who was on their menstrual period. Yang wanted to determine which one of the plaintiffs was the “unclean” one who had left the napkin in the bathroom. Everyone denied being on their menstrual period. Yang then forced the employees to line up against a wall and then one by one go into the bathroom to be inspected by a female attendant. The female attendant had all the women pull down their pants and underwear so their vaginal areas could be examined for a menstrual period.

Unsurprisingly, this incident led to a class action lawsuit. Now, two years after the suit has been filed, the defendant's insurance company, Arch Insurance, is refusing to provide coverage for damages arising out of this suit. Jon Davler Inc, in turn, has filed suit against the insurance providers for a breach of contract.

Arch's defense lies within an exclusion carved out in its policies; omissions include, “termination of a person's employment, or employment related practices.”

So the moral of the story is: there are demands of your employees that go too far.

Source: Roxanna Sevilla, et. al v. Jon Davler Inc,; Jon Davler Inc. v. Arch Stone Insurance Company

About the Author

Kashif Haque

Kashif Haque is a trial attorney and one of the founding attorneys of Aegis Law Firm. He served as the 2015 Chairman of the Orange County Bar Association—Labor and Employment Section. Mr. Haque has obtained millions of dollars on behalf of his clients through trial, arbitration and settlement. A...

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