Firm News

Attorney Erin Cole Joins the HAE Team

We are thrilled to welcome Erin Cole to the HAE team!  Erin joins us as an associate attorney representing victims of sexual assault in civil litigation and employees in claims involving wrongful termination, discrimination, sexual harassment, retaliation, and wage and hour violations at work. Prior to joining HAE, Erin worked as both a civil and criminal attorney helping victims of sexual assault, employment discrimination, and civil rights violations, as well as representing defendants in criminal cases.

Erin Cole
Erin Cole, Associate Attorney at Haeggquist & Eck, LLP

A graduate of University of San Diego School of Law, where she received the Pro Bono Service Recognition Award and the Congresswoman Lynn Schenk Scholarship, Erin has served as a judicial extern to Chief Judge Larry A. Burns of the United States District Court, Southern District of California, as well as to Hon. Andrew G. Schopler, Magistrate Judge for the Southern District of California. Visit Erin Cole’s Bio to learn more.



Big congrats are in order for HAE Managing Partner Alreen Haeggquist and Partner Amber Eck, who were selected for inclusion in the 28th Edition of The Best Lawyers In America! Alreen was honored for her work in Consumer Protection Law, while Amber was selected for her work in Securities Litigation.  

Alreen was also named San Diego’s Consumer Protection Lawyer Of The Year, and HAE associate Ian Pike was selected for inclusion in the Best Lawyers: Ones To Watch list. 

Since it was first published in 1983, Best Lawyers has become universally regarded as the definitive guide to legal excellence. Best Lawyers lists are compiled based on an exhaustive peer-review evaluation. 

Congratulations to the HAE team! 



LaFoy Trial Verdict

The San Diego Union Tribune has reported on Haeggquist & Eck’s trial victory in a sexual harassment and failure to prevent sexual harassment lawsuit against the County of San Diego’s Sheriff’s Department and former Assistant Sheriff Richard Miller. Read about how and why sexual harassment, no matter the form or how egregious, should be reported and taken seriously by employers:

Three Haeggquist & Eck Attorneys Named California Super Lawyers; Alreen Haeggquist, Amber Eck Named to Top 25 Women, Top 50 Attorneys Lists

We’re thrilled to announce that Haeggquist & Eck attorneys Alreen Haeggquist, Amber Eck, and Aaron Olsen have been selected to the 2021 California Super Lawyers list. Each year, no more than five percent of the lawyers statewide are selected by the research team at Super Lawyers to receive this honor.

Alreen Haeggquist and Amber Eck were each also selected for inclusion in the Top 25 Women San Diego Super Lawyers list and the Top 50 San Diego Super Lawyers list.

Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The annual selections are made using a patented multiphase process that includes a statewide survey of lawyers, an independent research evaluation of candidates and peer reviews by practice area. The result is a credible, comprehensive, and diverse listing of exceptional attorneys.

Please join us in congratulating Alreen, Amber and Aaron for this incredible honor! (And check out our ad in this year’s San Diego Super Lawyers magazine)

Hostile Work Environment & Quid Pro Quo: Two Types of Sexual Harassment

When you think about what sexual harassment is, you may think about the specific behaviors that constitute sexual harassment – such as unwanted touching, groping or sexual comments. Legally, however, there are two specific categories of sexual harassment — hostile work environment and quid pro quo.

Hostile Work Environment Sexual Harassment

Most people have heard the phrase “hostile work environment.” However, a hostile work environment is not, as many assume it to be, a workplace where employees feel overworked or micromanaged. It’s not even a place where a boss is constantly yelling or throwing things. Legally, a hostile work environment is a hostility based on an employee’s membership in a protected class, such as their race, gender, sexual orientation or disability. The harassment must be serious and pervasive – not just an isolated or occasional off-the-cuff remark – and make it nearly impossible for you to do your job. The following behaviors are examples of conduct that can lead to a hostile work environment:
  • Unwanted physical contact of any kind
  • Verbal comments about a person’s appearance or body, even if intended as a compliment
  • Derogatory comments or “jokes” that malign a particular sex
  • Attachments or links in company emails or instant messages that contain pornographic or sexually offensive material
  • Displaying imagery or messages of a sexual nature in the workplace
Anyone at a company can contribute to the creation of a hostile work environment. This includes business owners, executives, managers, supervisors, regular employees, independent contractors, and other such personnel. When employees experience inappropriate behavior, they must first make it clear to the perpetrator that the conduct is unwelcome and tell management of the situation. If the company doesn’t intervene in a meaningful manner to stop the sexual harassment from reoccurring, then the employee should seek an employment law attorney to help them assert their rights.

Quid Pro Quo Sexual Harassment

The second type of sexual harassment is known as “quid pro quo.” This is a Latin phrase that means “this for that,” and implies there is an exchange taking place. Within the context of sexual harassment in the workplace, that exchange is often a career incentive for a sexual favor. Unlike a hostile work environment, quid pro quo is also characterized by a power dynamic that concerns someone who has authority over an employee, to whom the offer is made. Workplace incentives the authority figure may offer in exchange for a sexual favor include the following:
  • Pay raise
  • Promotion
  • Placement on a preferred account
  • Job security during a round of layoffs
  • Protection from termination for otherwise justifiable motives
If any of the benefits listed above is contingent upon a subordinate performing a sexual favor for a superior, then quid pro quo sexual harassment has occurred. Offers may be explicit or implied, and they need neither be accepted nor completed. Merely proposing the offer is all it takes to cross the line.

Do You Need Legal Assistance?

If you believe you experienced sexual harassment at work in either of its forms, it’s important to reach out to an attorney as soon as possible. By evaluating your situation, a lawyer like one of ours at Haeggquist & Eck, LLP can offer potential options to help you take the next step with your claim. We are committed and driven to helping employees assert their rights, especially after they’ve experienced sexual harassment. When you work with Haeggquist & Eck, LLP, we can help you pursue the compensation you are entitled to. For more information about our services or to schedule a free initial consultation, please contact us online or call (619) 342-8000 today.

Three Haeggquist & Eck Attorneys Named To Prestigious “Best Lawyers of America” List

Three attorneys at San Diego employment and consumer rights firm Haeggquist & Eck have been selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© 2021.

  • Partner Alreen Heggquist was selected by her peers for inclusion in the Best Lawyers in America© 2021 in the field of Consumer Protection Law;
  • Partner Amber Eck was included in the Best Lawyers in America© 2021 for her work in Securities Litigation; and
  • Associate Ian Pike received a 2021 Best Lawyers: Ones To Watch recognition for Labor and Employment Law – Employee.

Since it was first published in 1983, Best Lawyers® has become universally regarded as the definitive guide to legal excellence. Best Lawyers lists are compiled based on an exhaustive peer-review evaluation. Almost 108,000 industry leading lawyers are eligible to vote (from around the world), and we have received over 13 million evaluations on the legal abilities of other lawyers based on their specific practice areas around the world. For the 2021 Edition of The Best Lawyers in America©, 9.4 million votes were analyzed, which resulted in more than 67,000 leading lawyers being included in the new edition. Lawyers are not required or allowed to pay a fee to be listed.

To schedule your free initial consultation, contact us online or call (619) 342-8000 today!

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