Corporate attorney, and managing and name partner of Litt Wheeler Williams Bennet, Louis Marlowe Litt, was up a gum tree with a fourth-year associate, Stephanie Patel. She developed hard feelings from a sexually offensive comment by Louis that was said to her in front of the firm’s associates. She decided to sue Louis for sexual harassment. He could not allow this to happen - it would ruin his reputation. He was willing to do just about whatever it took to make this lawsuit go away. He succeeded, but how? How did Louis get out his reputation being ruined and having to expend excessive amounts of money in punitive damages?
What Louis Litt did to get Stephanie Patel to drop her lawsuit
Louis approached Stephanie, and he not only apologized for the harsh comment he said to her, but he gave her a sincere explanation of his action - he poured his heart out.
After an associate, Brian Altma, entered Louis’ office to discuss his subpoena as a witness to the sexual harassment incident. He overheard a conversation between Louis and another lawyer regarding the harassment lawsuit. Louis was puzzled on what to do. He revealed that he would do anything, even have witnesses lie under oath to keep him from losing. Brian’s recommendation to Louis, which he too was a victim of verbal abuse by Louis, was to apologize because that’s what he would’ve wanted if he had taken Louis to court for what Louis said to him.
Louis first rejected apologizing, as it would insenuate that he was guilty of something. However, he thought about how he committed the sexual harassment act in front of the bullpen with a full-house of associates; there was no way he would win in court. Louis approached Stephanie, and he not only apologized for the harsh comment he said to her, but he gave her a sincere explanation of his action - he poured his heart out.
After Louis apologizes to Stephanie, she appreciates him for opening up. She then tells Louis why what he said bothered her the way it did that led her file a lawsuit. But after Louis explained the event that led up to his rage and sexual comment towards her, she realized that he was just taking his feelings out on her. She forgave him and dropped the lawsuit.
What did Louis Litt say to Stephane that caused her to sue?
“Just because no one wants to try with you doesn’t give you the right to tell me how to run my associates!”
One day Louis entered into the bullpen to speak to the associates. In the moment, an associate, Brian Altma, requested time off because he was having a baby. Louis lashed out at Brian over concerns of taking time off for having a baby. He yelled: “When you work here, you don’t think about home, family, and babies!” Stephanie intervened, stating that his comment towards Brian was unfair because he couldn’t have known he would have a baby. Louis responded with, “when people are trying, they know they’re trying.” He then goes on to say, what later became the comment that caused Stephanie to sue, “Just because no one wants to try with you doesn’t give you the right to tell me how to run my associates!” Oh boy! Now that was an extremely harsh comment to say to one of your associates. Surely a very negative perception of the character of Louis Litt can result, and in turn a lack of respect for Louis by his associates.
What explanation did Louis give Stephanie to change her mind about suing?
Louis explained to Stephanie that the night before the incident, his fiance left him. She was pregnant. He wasn’t the father, but he was excited to finally become a dad. When that went away, his life turned upside down...
Not only was the apology sincere, but the explanation as to why he took his emotions out on Stephanie was touching. When two human adults sit down respectfully and talk about an effective incident between the two, the truth of the basis of the matter can come out. Understanding of one another can lead to a greater level of respect which can potentially lead to a closer relationship, perhaps getting to know the genuenity of the person better versus just the work character of a person that they portray.
Louis explained to Stephanie that the night before the incident, his fiance left him. She was pregnant. He wasn’t the father, but he was excited to finally become a dad. When that went away, his life turned upside down; he was shocked and confused. So, the whole incident about getting time off for a newborn baby triggered Louis and caused him to react the awful way he did. The subject of someone being a father, and Louis losing his position as a future dad - just the day prior - due to a breakup of his finance, can be very tough to endure.
Why did the comment that Louis Litt said to Stephanie hurt her badly
...she is 34 years old, single, works incredible hours, and has no time to meet a significant other. She is worried that she will never have a family.
Stephanie said that the harassment comment affected her immensely because she is 34 years old, single, works incredible hours, and has no time to meet a significant other. She is worried that she will never have a family. So Louis saying that “no one wants to try with you” was overly offensive, belittling, and threatening, especially to someone in such a vulnerable position in relation to the comment. Louis struck a nerve, and he is fortunate that she forgave him; sometimes, all it takes is a sincere apology and explanation to fix a tensed matter.
If found guilty in a sexual harassment lawsuit, how much in fines does an employer have to pay?
- Employers with 15 - 100 employees - $50,000 limit
- 101 - 200 employees - $100,000 limit
- 201 - 500 employees - $200,000 limit
- 500 or more employees - $300,000 limit
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How to defend yourself against false sexual harassment accusations
Cooperate completely with the investigation
- make sure investigators have your honest side of the story to best clear your name
- provide all witnesses, definitely not of your enemies who may be part of the whole false accusation claim to destroy you
Admit any wrongdoing
- If you’ve dated the accuser or broke up recently, reveal it - if you’ve violated the rules of dating coworkers or managament, it’s better to get fired for rule violation than sexual harassment
- If you were watching porn on your computer and got caught by a coworker, IT likely already knows about it
- Even if your joke wasn’t inappropriate, some coworkers just can’t handle those types of amusement - sexual harassment is when an action or comment is unwanted and offensive; if your joke struck a nerve of a coworker, make a mental note never to do these types of jokes around the subjected person again
Hire a lawyer
- Sometimes hiring a lawyer may not be necessary, as the investigation will be sufficient - if not, call a lawyer
- Hire one that specializes in employment law - they are likley to have more experience in sexual harassment related cases to best guide you through the entire process
For all of the fans of the American legal drama television series Suits, you are well aware of the character, Louis Litt. He is a fictional character who plays an expert in corporate finance and has an infatuation with cats, and also looks up to his law partner, Harvey Specter. In season 7, episode 6 is when Louis Litt apologizes to Stephanie for his sexual harassment comment that led to her dropping the lawsuit.
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