What constitutes slander by a former employer?

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What constitutes slander by a former employer?

A friend was terminated from her job almost a year ago, and the company she worked for is still slandering her name and associating her with events that she had no part in. The management at the business she used to work at promised that they would not talk to the other employees about her situation and/or reason for the termination. Yet they have, and now, almost a year later, people are still slandering her name and accusing her of actions that she had no part in. Does she have grounds for a lawsuit?

Asked on December 2, 2010 under Employment Labor Law, Washington

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Your friend could file a lawsuit for defamation against her employer.  Defamation is a false statement made with knowledge of its falsity communicated to a third party.  Slander is spoken defamation.  Your friend could file a lawsuit against the employer for defamation.  The employer would also be liable for each incident in which the slander has been repeated to others.  In addition to a cause of action (claim) for defamation, your friend may be able to include a separate cause of action (claim) in the lawsuit for intentional infliction of emotional distress.  Intentional infliction of emotional distress is an extreme and outrageous act intended to cause and which does cause emotional distress. 


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