Is post-employment harassment by an employer and former co-workers a violation of the law? If so, can I sue my former employer for it?

Updated on : January 20, 2022 by Billy Robinson



Is post-employment harassment by an employer and former co-workers a violation of the law? If so, can I sue my former employer for it?

This is America. Anyone can sue anyone for anything.

I'm not a lawyer, but I don't think the lawsuit will succeed on its merits. The law guarantees the employee a non-hostile workplace. It does not guarantee a non-hostile post-workplace environment. Perhaps a vigorous advocate could argue that hostility toward a former employee could reasonably be viewed by current employees as hostility toward them, or a similar convoluted chain of reasoning, but even straightforward discrimination lawsuits are hard to win, so I would not count them. in that.

By the way, "harassment" in the sense of labor law does not

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This is America. Anyone can sue anyone for anything.

I'm not a lawyer, but I don't think the lawsuit will succeed on its merits. The law guarantees the employee a non-hostile workplace. It does not guarantee a non-hostile post-workplace environment. Perhaps a vigorous advocate could argue that hostility toward a former employee could reasonably be viewed by current employees as hostility toward them, or a similar convoluted chain of reasoning, but even straightforward discrimination lawsuits are hard to win, so I would not count them. in that.

By the way, "harassment" in the employment law sense does not mean, well, harassment. It means creating a hostile or discriminatory environment based on a protected characteristic, such as gender or ethnicity. There are unprotected characteristics (as is known, gender identity is currently not protected) and if the company harasses people in an impartial way, it can get away with it.

I am not a lawyer and cannot give legal advice, but this is my opinion anyway.

Harassment can take many forms. Slander or defamation is actionable regardless of who commits it and therefore would be a violation of the law. Harassment of phone calls? I would need to speak to an attorney. Derogatory comments on social media? If the comments are true or just an opinion, they are probably safe. As I said, harassment can take many forms and only an attorney in your jurisdiction can really help. I will say that many years ago a new employee of mine was harassed by her former employer. A short letter from our attorney put a

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I am not a lawyer and cannot give legal advice, but this is my opinion anyway.

Harassment can take many forms. Slander or defamation is actionable regardless of who commits it and therefore would be a violation of the law. Harassment of phone calls? I would need to speak to an attorney. Derogatory comments on social media? If the comments are true or just an opinion, they are probably safe. As I said, harassment can take many forms and only an attorney in your jurisdiction can really help. I will say that many years ago a new employee of mine was harassed by her former employer. A short letter from our attorney put an end to that.

The short answer is yes, if you can prove it. It's best to leave the long answer to an attorney who can navigate the murky legal definition of harassment. If you look up the legal definition of harassment, it says "a course of conduct that annoys, threatens, intimidates, alarms, or puts a person in fear for their safety." An attorney can analyze the merits of your claim and tell you if it meets this definition from any additional clarification offered by your state law.

Litigious but useless. You don't have a real equitable loss. It is possible to invoke normal barriers. that is to say. Restraining orders, etc. but it only goes so far. Avoid them as much as possible and try to get a jewelry camera to record the bullying. If that harassment affects your job, a contract, or any other financial gain, you have a potential loss. All require reasonable evidence.

Unless you have cut off all contacts, are refusing to refer to them, and are actively involved in severing any association with the company and its employees, this claim may have some credibility.

Quora readers are not lawyers.

In the US, generally, unless you've signed an agreement that you won't be recruiting other employees, you can do so legally. Even if he did, they would have to show that he was compensated for agreeing not to recruit.

Your "knowledge" of the company is irrelevant in such a case, unless you are somehow using trade secrets to recruit your employees, which I can't even imagine how it would work ... maybe they are trying to claim that your knowledge of the Company employees or their dissatisfaction or dissatisfaction with their jobs is a trade secret. Big laugh there.

My first question

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In the US, generally, unless you've signed an agreement that you won't be recruiting other employees, you can do so legally. Even if he did, they would have to show that he was compensated for agreeing not to recruit.

Your "knowledge" of the company is irrelevant in such a case, unless you are somehow using trade secrets to recruit your employees, which I can't even imagine how it would work ... maybe they are trying to claim that your knowledge of the Company employees or their dissatisfaction or dissatisfaction with their jobs is a trade secret. Big laugh there.

My first question is, of course, did you sign any such agreements? Or did you sign a non-compete agreement (hiring for a competitor could be seen as a competition…)? (Non-competition is a complex area where you need legal advice ...)

Second, what information would they have to suggest that you tried to recruit someone?

The answers appear to be "no, no" and "none".

I would definitely speak to an attorney about it and let them review your employment contract, if any, and termination documentation.

Then, if he so advises, you can ask him to send a very courteous letter on his behalf saying

  • That did not happen, and this firm asks you to present each and every piece of evidence to the contrary. If you are unable to present such evidence, we require that you cease and desist from making such claims or attempting to intimidate our client.
  • Furthermore, I have informed my client that his company has no basis for any legal action.
    • My client did not sign an agreement not to recruit or not to compete;
    • The law does not prohibit this alleged behavior (it does not do it anywhere that I know of);
    • However, if my client decides to do so or if a former co-worker applies for employment, as there is no law or agreement to the contrary, my client will not be liable in any way.
    • This firm requires that I immediately explain any basis on which I believe they could act against my client.
    • If you continue to harass or discredit my client or if it in any way affects his good reputation; or suggest that you have acted unethically, illegally, or improperly in any way, you can be sure that we will take action against your company to seek redress.

While I don't recommend employers to do this, generally as a best practice, if they are actually filing a lawsuit: YOU MUST TALK TO AN ATTORNEY. If they're just saying they can sue, I'd look at the posts and "double-check" them to see what you've said in regards to facts or opinions. So you know where I come from, although I have never been successfully sued for employment discrimination, there are certainly people who have tried or thought about trying (it just goes with the territory) and they have asked my opinion. other employers where an employee has filed a lawsuit.

My very strong suspicion, is th

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While I don't recommend employers to do this, generally as a best practice, if they are actually filing a lawsuit: YOU MUST TALK TO AN ATTORNEY. If they're just saying they can sue, I'd look at the posts and "double-check" them to see what you've said in regards to facts or opinions. So you know where I come from, although I have never been successfully sued for employment discrimination, there are certainly people who have tried or thought about trying (it just goes with the territory) and they have asked my opinion. other employers where an employee has filed a lawsuit.

My very strong suspicion is that the "examples" you have given probably combine facts and opinions. The tort implications here are similar when an employer gives a bad reference and an employee leaves a bad review online. The problem with a publicly published statement is not "that you believe it", it is what the average reader would conclude based on the context.

Couple examples to illustrate the concept:

Example A. Slander by Bad Reference Joe is an at-will employee. Fired Joe for violating company policy of being late for work twice in the same month. If they ask me for a reference later and I actually provide one, this has to be simple, straightforward and straightforward and without an opinion based on the reason. So some statements:

Joe was fired on XX / XX / XXXX because we have an enforced company policy regarding punctual attendance that specifies that employees who are late more than once a month must be fired. - This statement is perfectly fine.

Joe was fired because he was unreliable in his attendance, causing other employees to have to perform their duties. This statement is not right and can get you sued.

  • Unreliable is an opinion, however the way I've said it makes it sound like a fact. This is a concluding statement, which means that I have now put the reasonableness of the statement at stake. Specifically "Why was Joe late?" now it becomes a matter of whether this constitutes libel. As an at-will employee, I can certainly fire him for being late, or not being late, or because his shirt was green, or pretty much anything. However, that same protection does not cover my written or verbal comments about why I fired him.

Let's say Joe takes the subway here in DC as his normal method of travel, he knew it when I hired him, and twice that month the Subway was dramatically delayed, causing Joe to be late. I'm probably going to lose because my “unreliable” conclusion is probably not considered reasonable by a jury.

Example B. Incorrect online review. You are dissatisfied with the termination and believe that the employer was unfair to you for a reason that was pre-text or was not reasonable. Context is important here too. Let's say you think it was based on the fact that you are apparently young and feminine, so you write:

I didn't like working here and I got laid off after serving my two week notice. I did not believe the reasons given and felt that I was fired because I am a young woman who is leaving. - This statement is fine. From the statement it is clear that he is only expressing his personal opinion, since he did not like the specific circumstance, he did not put his personal interpretations at stake. A subsequent one has a clear explanation of what this is and can do it accordingly.

I hated this place. My boss Ryan was constantly yelling at all the young female employees and when I objected to this I was fired. - This statement is probably libel unless you can back it up. While this was your personal observation, you have stated the conclusion, "my boss Ryan constantly yelled at all the young female employees" - AND- "When I objected to this, I was fired." Both are concluding statements. Especially "When I objected to this, I was fired", did you get fired on the spot? Was this the stated or actual reason for your dismissal? A reasonable reader would likely infer that this was the sole reason for his dismissal, if Ryan has another reason which is likely libel. Let's say Ryan can document that he fired you for excessively chatting with idols during work hours or for being rude to co-workers and by document I mean that he has statements from your co-workers or other supervisors that support this; So yes, your statement is likely to expose you to harm.

Also, just a general preface to the statement with "In my opinion" doesn't actually protect you.

I hope that helps.

While some reading this may think it is an extreme answer, first document EVERYTHING they are doing, how often it happens, etc. Then go to the police to file a report with them, then go to court and file a restraining order against you. or a court order against harassment, whatever it is called in your jurisdiction. If they continue to contact you after receiving the notification, they may be arrested for violating the court order. Especially if your contact is widespread, unpleasant, and if any threats are made, be sure to inform the court. They could "mail" at your workplace, me personally

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While some reading this may think it is an extreme answer, first document EVERYTHING they are doing, how often it happens, etc. Then go to the police to file a report with them, then go to court and file a restraining order against you. or a court order against harassment, whatever it is called in your jurisdiction. If they continue to contact you after receiving the notification, they may be arrested for violating the court order. Especially if your contact is widespread, unpleasant, and if any threats are made, be sure to inform the court. They could “go postcard” in your workplace, I personally would not tolerate it for long before acting.

While I didn't have to deal with a former employee, I did deal with a neighbor in the apartments I used to live in, who constantly harassed me in the manner described above. After talking to him several times and asking him to stop, including involving the apartment management and security patrol, I ended up contacting the police, who recommended taking legal action after several months of constant harassment.

There is this great and more than often not so great legal system called tort. This system exists to allow people to obtain legal redress for wrongdoing committed against their interests by another person. What you do when a previous employer is interfering with your current job is file a tort lawsuit. Seek legal redress for the damage that is being committed against you.

Your old employer is just your "old" employer, you have no right to interfere with your current job and it is probably illegal for you to do so. It is time to seek the advice of an attorney whose fo

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There is this great and more than often not so great legal system called tort. This system exists to allow people to obtain legal redress for wrongdoing committed against their interests by another person. What you do when a previous employer is interfering with your current job is file a tort lawsuit. Seek legal redress for the damage that is being committed against you.

Your old employer is just your "old" employer, you have no right to interfere with your current job and it is probably illegal for you to do so. It is time to seek the advice of an attorney whose focus is employment law. Let the attorney advise you if you have a case and if there is a lawsuit. Your attorney may be able to issue a cease and desist order prohibiting any further communication with your current employer by your former employer about you.

If you are unsure about taking legal recourse against your former employer, consider this, if you were interfering with your former employer's business by saying rude things about him, they would hire an attorney and sue you in the blink of an eye. eyes. They would sue you under 'unlawful interference', the legal concept that you cannot interfere with someone else's business interests. If you were saying defamatory and untrue things about your former employer, they would not only have the right to sue you, but they would also be right to do so. But based on what you submitted, you are not interfering with your business, but you are interfering with your current job, your livelihood. So, considering that, What's holding you back Find a great attorney who specializes in employment law and get advice on what your legal rights are.

I can tell you the point of view of your boss, because I had exactly the same situation with one of my subordinates. A lady (let's call her Jen) who reported to my subordinate (I'll call her Mary) had to be fired due to her poor performance. After being fired, Jen kept emailing how incompetent Mary is for a long time.

What did I do? One: He asked Mary to ignore the emails and focus on her work. Two: She reported the emails to the recruiter who recommended Jen to us and blacklisted her so she wouldn't show up on any of our requirements again.

He knew that Mary was not incompetent and the emails were

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I can tell you the point of view of your boss, because I had exactly the same situation with one of my subordinates. A lady (let's call her Jen) who reported to my subordinate (I'll call her Mary) had to be fired due to her poor performance. After being fired, Jen kept emailing how incompetent Mary is for a long time.

What did I do? One: He asked Mary to ignore the emails and focus on her work. Two: She reported the emails to the recruiter who recommended Jen to us and blacklisted her so she wouldn't show up on any of our requirements again.

He knew that Mary was not incompetent and emails were sent out of spite. I would also have known if Mary was really incompetent, without Jen bombarding me through the mail after she was fired. As a senior manager, knowing how my team is performing is literally my bread and butter. If I depended on disgruntled former employees to tell me who to fire, I would have been and should have been fired myself.

What should you do? Ignore it and focus on your work. No matter where you work or how you work, if you work with 10 people, 3 of them will say very good things about you, 4 will be left with nothing, and 3 will say that you are the worst person they have ever met. It's just life; taking it personally is a big mistake. Your boss already knows if you are incompetent / rude and should be fired or not. Emails from someone outside the company will not influence your decision making.

That would be a difficult accusation to prove. Hmm.

I would deny it and tell you to bring it in and that you counterclaim for lost time, legal fees, and defamation of character.

I am not a lawyer. The best thing to do if you are really concerned is to hire a local attorney and get professional legal advice.

I really don't see why he would take to court what he says you did other than out of sheer hatred for you. The cost alone is not worth a legal victory.

Is it illegal to have a negative opinion about someone? There goes the argument of speaking badly. And a false accusation? Unless it's supposedly something that

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That would be a difficult accusation to prove. Hmm.

I would deny it and tell you to bring it in and that you counterclaim for lost time, legal fees, and defamation of character.

I am not a lawyer. The best thing to do if you are really concerned is to hire a local attorney and get professional legal advice.

I really don't see why he would take to court what he says you did other than out of sheer hatred for you. The cost alone is not worth a legal victory.

Is it illegal to have a negative opinion about someone? There goes the argument of speaking badly. And a false accusation? Unless it is supposedly something that damaged the character of the employees and thus caused him to lose a customer and his income, I do not see damage of any kind.

Let's say you spoke ill of these two gentlemen, if what you said was true, then there is no defamation.

I don't think I have anything on you, but like I said before. I am not a lawyer and I do not pretend to be. I don't even play a lawyer on TV, hehe, so the best thing to do is pay a guy $ 500-1000 and get his legal advice.

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