As a junior lawyer starting out in Canberra, Kavina Mistry experienced bullying so intense that it led her to contemplate suicide.
The Canadian-born family solicitor says she was belittled by fellow practitioners in front of clients, had her intelligence and suitability for the job questioned, and was excluded from conversations - each instance, instilling a fear in her that she wasn't "good enough".
Some years on, and now a senior lawyer, the 32-year-old has pushed through - with the help of a psychologist who she still sees - and is responsible for starting the ACT Law Society's Young Lawyers' Mentor Program.
But when people approach her with questions about what to do in situations of bullying and sexual harassment in the workplace, the answer is not clear-cut.
"It's a constant cost-benefit analysis," Ms Mistry said.
"For my mental health, should I raise this and make it clear that this is a problem? And if I do that, what is going to be the cost?
"At the end of the day, if you need this job, and you don't have a back-up plan, it may not be something that you're prepared to take a stand for."
This reality is something legal professionals are lobbying to change. While workplace policies and processes have improved in recent years, company leads are reluctant to dole out consequences, Ms Mistry said.
"We seem to be in a strange period where it's acknowledged that there's a problem, but in terms of the actions and behaviours that are being displayed, it's still happening," she said.
The International Bar Association's 'Us too?' report found more than 61 per cent of lawyers have been bullied in Australia.
This increases to 73 per cent for women, or decreases to 50 per cent for men; compared with a global average of 55 per cent and 30 per cent, for each gender respectively.
Nearly 30 per cent of lawyers in Australia - or 47 per cent of women and 13 per cent of men - have been sexually harassed. This is compared with a global average of 37 per cent for women and 7 per cent for men.
Chair of the Law Council of Australia's Equal Opportunity Committee Kate Eastman, says management in the legal profession often don't know how to handle formal complaints.
Often it's still the case that the person who leaves the organisation is the complainant, not the perpetrator.Chair of the Law Council of Australia's Equal Opportunity Committee Kate Eastman
"Just having a policy is not enough; you've got to get this commitment from the leaders of organisations that this behaviour won't be tolerated, and if there is substantiated sexual harassment [or bullying], then they'll do something about it," she said.
"Often it's still the case that the person who leaves the organisation is the complainant, not the perpetrator."
About 66 per cent of Australian lawyers surveyed said their workplace had policies in place to deal with sexual harassment and bullying, but only 58 per cent indicated confidence in the people responsible for implementing them.
Director of the Law Council of Australia and president of the ACT Bar Association, Steven Whybrow, acknowledged the gap in the effectiveness of processes and policy at a Monday night event to raise awareness about the findings of 'Us too?'
"Australia's legal profession has professional conduct laws in place to deal with sexual harassment and bullying," he said.
"But the mere existence of them has not stemmed the problem."
Author of the report, Kieran Pender, said Canberra was a particularly significant place to have a conversation about sexual harassment and bullying in the legal profession.
"Our results found that government lawyers globally were particularly susceptible to these forms of conduct," he said. "
"Given Canberra is the centre of Australian government and is home to many government lawyers, we thought this was an important place to [discuss sexual harassment and bullying."
The Women's Legal Centre ACT provides advice on discrimination and harassment in the workplace. They can be contacted on 6257 4377.