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One of my friends works at a university and foreged her

One of my friends...

One of my friends works at a university and foreged her boss's signature on a contract to bring in a speaker. She did not tell her boss and when she talked with the police today, they said that they highly doubt she would go to jail or prison. She did not mean to harm anyone and did not get anything gained financially and she did not try to decieve anyone

Lawyer's Assistant: Have you discussed this with a manager or HR? Or with a lawyer?

With HR and HR has told her that they are waiting to hear the decision back from the provost's office

Lawyer's Assistant: Are you an "at will" employee? Do you belong to a union?

At will employee

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

No, nothing else

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Answered in 10 minutes by:
3/22/2018
Patrick, Esq.
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 14,387
Experience: Significant experience in all areas of employment law.
Verified

Good evening and welcome. I am very sorry to hear about this situation. Can you please clarify for me what your specific question is? I very much look forward to assisting you on this matter.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
When my friend talked with HR and the police, they told her that they highly doubt she will have any jail time. Is that true?
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
one of her friends is who is a lawyer, said worst case they will fire her

Thank you. ***** would definitely agree that actual jail or prison time would be very unlikely. This was clearly a serious lapse in judgment on the part of your friend, but since there was no direct financial benefit to her and ultimately no harm, prosecutors would not be motivated to aggressively pursue and would be likely to offer a plea bargain to a lesser charge in the event criminal charges were filed at all.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
If she lives in the state of Indiana, does that affect anything? Also what do you think will likely happen to her?
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
My friend is very worried. Overall do you think she will be okay?

Being in Indiana does not affect anything that I can think of, no. As for what will happen, that's really impossible for me to predict. One big factor is what the boss would like to see done, as the district attorney's office will likely be influenced by how badly the boss wants to see charges filed. Whether your friend has any previous criminal history is another factor. Previous convictions will make it more likely that charges will be pursued now.

As the police were called, it is obvious that the boss views this as a very serious matter and so termination would be almost a certainty. Whether criminal charges will be filed is harder to say and again likely hinges on the factors i have described above, among other things. If criminal charges are filed, a plea bargain would likely be offered for something less severe, and again, jail would be extremely unlikely.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
My friend has never had criminal charges before in her life. The reason she signed the contract was because since there were so many partners on campus that wanted the event to happen, she did want to disappoint them. It turns out that they are bringing the speaker. The friend got a new job at the university so she left that previous job. She also got an email saying that they had revised the contract so I am guessing that they were able to revise.
She talked to the police and detective today and said that they took her university keys and parking pass and she cannot come back to campus until she hears back from HR. Is that standard procedure?

Yes that seems fairly standard.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
should my friend be worried a lot and less worried? she tends to over think everything. She got a call from HR today and they said they are waiting to hear a decision from the provost's office and will contact her tomorrow

I really cannot tell your friend how to feel. All I can really say is what I have said above regarding likely outcomes and factors.

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Again, I do think that criminal charges would be unlikely, and that any sort of jail would be extremely unlikely.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Her lawyer friend told her that since she wasn't trying to defraud anyone, probably the worst case is termination. Do you agree?

What you have described sounds like a lapse in judgment, not a crime.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
What is the difference?

I think we are going in circles here a bit. I agree that termination is the most likely outcome, yes. I believe that criminal charges are unlikely and jail is extremely unlikely.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Okay, my friend is so worried so I am sorry for asking you so many questions

When I said above that this seemed more like a lapse in judgment then a crime, I simply mean that the district attorneys office will likely see there was no true criminal intent here and that this was just a bad decision.

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The questions are not a problem, do not worry. There is just a limited number of ways I can say the same thing. I understand your friends concern with this situation, but she should know that this is not the kind of case prosecutors will aggressively pursue.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
If my friend was trying to receive financial gain or purposely hurting someone, would that be a crime?

Forgery is a crime in itself. Forgery for the purpose of obtaining something of value is more serious and more likely to be actually prosecuted. So, it's not a question here of whether a crime has occurred, it is a question of whether the crime is serious enough to warrrant the district attorney pressing charges.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Ahhh, okay.
So my friend told me that esentially:
She was trying to bring a speaker to campus and the contract honorarium was originally 45K but when she approached her boss, she told him that it was 10K so she revised the contract honorarium to 10K and signed his signature to give her some time to get enough campus co-sponsors for 45K. She had explained this all to the police and they told her that they cannot predict what will happen because they see that she is a good person and so it is highly unlikely there will be any jail or prison time
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
The detective said that she just seemed to make a bad decision but was doing it to try to help people and not hurt anyone.

Sorry I'm not quite sure what you are asking...

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
I am just wondering in your opinion, do you think my friend should be most likely prepared for resignation or something much worse?

Forgive me but I believe this is the question I have already answered. Resignation/termination is the most likely outcome, yes. Criminal charges are unlikely and jail is extremely unlikely.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
I guess I should tell my friend to relax a little bit more than she is.

Worrying does not accomplish anything, correct. I wish you and your friend the best and hope that I was able to answer your questions here.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Thank you

You are very welcome. Was there anything else I can do for you before we wrap up?

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
No but overall, what advice do you have for my friend and should she get anything ready?

She should not speak to law enforcement any more than she already has. That is the most important thing.

Again, I hope this helps and I wish you both the best. If I have answered your questions this evening, I would be very grateful for a positive rating of my service (using the stars at the top of the page) so that I may receive credit for assisting you.

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Are you still with me?

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
I am going to rate you now. I'm with my friend right now so im going over what you said

Okay, very good, I do appreciate you taking a moment to rate as this is how I receive credit for my time. Again, best wishes to you both.

Patrick, Esq.
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 14,387
Experience: Significant experience in all areas of employment law.
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Patrick, Esq. and 87 other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Are you there?
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
I have one more question

Yes, I am here...

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
my friend told me that she got a call from HR today that said that they are still waiting to hear back from the Provost office if she will be terminated or not. They said it could be the same. If by chance it stays the same, does that mean it is all over?

I don't know what you mean what you say it could be the same. What could be the same?

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago

The HR lady told her that she will either be terminated or stay at ****** with her same job. She is just waiting for the Provost's decision. If the Provost says she can stay, does that mean the case is over?

That would seem to suggest that the provost is not interested in seeing criminal charges pressed, and since the district attorney will usually listen to what the victim wants to see done in these situations, yes I would say this is definitely a good sign that criminal prosecution will not be pursued, and of course also that the employee will not be terminated. Of course, this is not a guarantee of either of these things, but it certainly makes them more promising.

I hope this helps!

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
if the victim doesn't want to press charges, then most likely there won't be prosecution?

Yes, the victim's wishes would be factored heavily into the district attorney's decision in a case like this, generally speaking, as we discussed last evening.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
How many days does it usually take for a district attorney to make a decision?

There is no rule. Usually these decide within a few weeks.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Ahhh, okay. Of course you can't guarantee but you think the chances of criminal prosecution are slim?

Yes, it would seem unlikely if your employer does not want to see charges pressed.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Ahhh, since the case would be the employer vs. the employee?

No, just because the district attorney tends to listen to what the victim wants in these situations, as explained above and as explained last night.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Okay, thank you for your explanation!

You are very welcome.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
my friend could relax a little bit more?

I cannot tell your friend how to feel, I can only answer the questions I have above and then it is up to your friend to feel how they want to feel, so I'm really not sure how to respond to that.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
My friend is really worried and I'm not sure what to tell her.

I would relate to her what I have explained above. I have repeatedly said that criminal prosecution and jail are unlikely, especially now so given the additional information you supplied today. That should help her feel better.

I wish you well.

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