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Update to New York State Sexual Harassment Law Statute of Limitations to Take Effect Next Month

Last August, changes were made to New York State’s sexual harassment laws, one of which provides employees with more time to file an administrative charge for sexual harassment. Effective August 12, 2020, employees will have three years to bring an administrative claim of sexual harassment under state law, whether filing a claim with an administrative agency or in court. Previously, the applicable statute of limitations was one year in administrative agencies.

Next Steps

To comply with this change, employers should update their current sexual harassment policy to reflect the new statute of limitations. For clients that have the HR Works Sexual Harassment or Non-Harassment/Non-Discrimination policy, the Legal Protections and External Remedies for the New York State Division of Human Rights (DHR) section should be updated to state, “Complaints with DHR may be filed any time within three years of the harassment.”

HR Works Can Help

HR Works offers an Employee Handbook Service which allows clients to work with a Compliance Specialist on the development of an employee handbook that complies with federal and state law. Employers who do not subscribe to the Helpline and would like more information on employee handbooks, training, or our Helpline Service may contact for a referral to a HR Works Business Development team member.

Helpline subscribers will also receive an updated policy as part of the 2021 handbook updates or may also contact a Compliance Specialist for questions related to making the update to their policy now. Clients who subscribe to our Human Resource Strategic Services may contact their Human Resource Strategic Partner (HRSP) to have their policy updated.

HR Works, headquartered in Upstate New York, is a human resource management outsourcing and consulting firm serving clients throughout the United States for over thirty years. HR Works provides scalable strategic human resource management and consulting services, including: affirmative action programs; benefits administration outsourcing; HRIS self-service technology; full-time, part-time and interim on-site HR managers; HR audits; legally reviewed employee handbooks and supervisor manuals; talent management and recruiting services; and training of managers and HR professionals.