Imagine that you’ve got a promising job interview at a company you’re really interested in working for. The pay is good, the benefits are good, and you’ll be doing something that you know is a perfect fit for you. You’re dressed perfectly, your hair is just right, and you’ve checked your breath. You ace the interview and you know that the job’s in the bag. But a couple weeks later, you find out that you didn’t get the job because your previous employer lied to them about your employment history.
This is called employment-related defamation, and it is illegal. If you catch your former employer lying about you, and these lies hurt your career, you can seek legal compensation. For example, if your employer told a prospective future employer that you had committed gross misconduct when you had not, and this costs you the job you were hoping to get, you may be in a position to win a defamation lawsuit.
In many cases, if you can prove that your name was muddied because of the slander of a former employer, even if it doesn’t directly affect your career, you may be able to successfully sue for defamation of character. In a similar vein, if your employer defames you in order to fire you, you can sue them for wrongful termination.
However, if your former employer states job-pertinent facts about you that damage your career, you probably won’t be able to sue for defamation. Many states have laws protecting employers performing reference checks, which protects them from being brought into court for defamation.
If you have been the victim of employment-related defamation, contact the Austin employment attorneys of The Melton Law Firm by calling (512) 330-0017.