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What Can My Former Employer Say About Me in California?

Posted on November 13, 2023 in Employment Law

“Can we call your past or current employer?” This is a question that an interviewer may ask you in the hopes that you say that they can and, in doing so, they hope to get any information about the type of employee you were. Do you need to agree to this? What can your former employer say about you in California under employment law?

Know the Limitations That Protect Your Privacy

There are some situations where you may be leaving a job on bad terms, and as such, you do not want your potential new boss to know about those conditions. This is why there are some limitations on what a former employer can say about you under California law.

The state’s laws provide for several key things you need to keep in mind:

  • The employer is not required under law to provide a reference for employees. They do not have to say anything.
  • The employer can provide information about your job performance.
  • The employer can provide information about your qualifications for a job.
  • The employer can also provide information about whether or not you are eligible for rehire by the company.

If the employer provided information in one of these areas, it is not likely that you can pursue financial compensation for the losses you have incurred. However, there are some instances in which you can seek out compensation.

When Does Your Former Employer Go Too Far?

There are some situations where your former employer may go too far, making statements that cost you the new potential position. For example, your employer cannot:

  • Make statements that are false in any way, including being misleading.
  • They cannot make statements that could be considered a reckless disregard for the truth (this could lead to defamation or libel lawsuits).
  • Employers cannot make statements that are malicious in any way.
  • They cannot provide unsolicited information about you or your job performance.
  • They cannot make statements about your beliefs, such as politics or religion, or make statements about your union activities.
  • The employer cannot violate any rules and requirements listed in the contract you sign with them.

If you believe that your former employer made statements that were inaccurate or misleading in any way, and you believe these statements cost you your prospective job, then it is critical that you reach out to a San Diego employment lawyer to learn your rights and pursue compensation. There are times when a former employer may be upset with you for talking to a prospective employer and, as a result, may make statements that are inaccurate or misleading to prevent you from being hired. They cannot do this.

Put Our Team to Work for You Today

Do you believe your former employer said something that was illegal? Let our San Diego employment attorneys at Walker Law help you to navigate your rights. Our attorneys recognize just how damaging such statements can be, and we know the law and how to use it to protect our clients. Call us now for a free consultation to find out what we can do to help you.

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