Thank you for using Just Answer. I look forward to assisting you.You wouldn't be able to sue, because it is not your company, and therefore you lack "standing", or the legal right to sue this employee. However, your mother, as owner of the company could sue, if she could establish all of the elements of defamation.Under Florida law, the elements of a defamation claim are:the defendant published a false statement;about the plaintiff;to a third party; andthe falsity of the statement caused injury (damages) to the plaintiff.Border Collie Rescue v. Ryan, 418 F.Supp.2d 1330, 1348 (M.D.Fla. 2006). A plaintiff must also prove that the defendant's fault in publishing the statement amounted to at least negligence.So, your mother would have to show that the employee's negative statements resulted in some form of damages to the company - e.g., it has caused her to lose clients/business.Florida is also an "at will
" employment state, so in the absence of an employment contract
or union agreement, an employee can be terminated at any time, for any reason, with or without cause, so long as they are not terminated for an unlawful reason, such as because of their race, or age. Certainly making constant negative statements about the company and the owner is grounds for at least disciplinary action
, up to and including termination
, because it amounts to insubordination
. If you need clarification or additional information, please reply and I'm happy to assist further. Otherwise, kindly remember to leave a positive rating by clicking on the stars/happy faces before signing out, so I am credited for my time and assistance today. Thank you!