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The Employer’s Legal Advisor by Thomas M. Hanna

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Interpreting Employee Behavior

Alert supervisors and managers can be a blessing. In one of my cases, a dismissed employee named Don filed a claim that he had been discriminatorily fired because he was disabled. That claim was without legal merit and we were in the process of proving it when Don filed a new, second charge claiming that he had been unable to secure other employment because his former supervisor, Earl, had given him a “negative reference.” The problem presented here is the fact that even if the original charge is without legal merit and is dismissed by the court or agency, the very fact that a charge was made in the first place is a legally protected activity and enables the charging employee to claim that he was retaliated against ...

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