Employment Law Questions? Ask an Employment Lawyer.
Thank you for using Just Answer. I look forward to assisting you.Unfortunately, as an at will employee, you can be terminated for any time, for any reason, with or without cause. An employee can be terminated because of a false accusation or because it's raining too hard outside. The employer needs no reason. The law only provides protection in cases where an employee was terminated because of an illegal reason -because of their race, religion, age (over 40), sex, disability or national origin. It is also unlawful to terminate an employee for public policy reasons (e.g., because they had jury duty, or for filing a safety complaint with OSHA). So, even though what happened to you was unfair, based on these limited facts, it is legal.You potentially do have a claim against the employee who made the false theft accusations for defamation. Defamation involves the intentional or negligent making of a false statement or statements by the defendant about the plaintiff to a third party (in this case, to your boss/HR) which results in damages to the plaintiff (the loss of your job).That said, litigation cases can be very expensive. Typically attorneys that represent plaintiffs in defamation cases do so on a contingency basis, meaning you only pay a fee if you win -they take a percentage -normally at least 25%. But that also means that lawyers are often looking for bigger cases that warrant running up the heavy costs of litigation. A lawyer can evaluate your case and give you an idea of what it might cost and what you might expect if successful. Most cases do settle out of court, through mediation or arbitration. Even if successful though, keep in mind all you get is a judgment that a defendant has to pay. Often that's the easiest part. Actually then getting a defendant to pay you can take even more time and money and in many instances, isn't successful.Please remember to kindly leave a positive rating for me by clicking on the stars, as that is the only way experts are paid for their time even though you may have already paid a deposit to the site. Follow-up questions asked in this thread do not cost anything additional after leaving a positive rating.If you need clarification about my answer or additional information, please use the SEND or REPLY button to continue our conversation. Your satisfaction is my goal and I am here to help!
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