What are my rights if I was working at a retail chain and the store manager pressured us to do fraudulent transactions that resulted in my termination?

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What are my rights if I was working at a retail chain and the store manager pressured us to do fraudulent transactions that resulted in my termination?

We were pressured into doing fraudulent credit card applications and reward accounts. I was fired for doing this and was never told that I was going to be sued for these offenses and a couple months ago received a letter from a law office saying I owed Sears $300. I called the officr and talked to a supervisor who told me they will look into up but I am still getting letter for these thing which I was pressured to do by a store manager who still works at the company. This also happened to another employee, who is Caucasian, and after he called they stopped sending him letters. I want to know what to do and do I have a case to counter sue maybe?

Asked on August 2, 2014 under Employment Labor Law, New Jersey

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

No, unfortunately, based on what you write, you do not have a case to countersue: you may have been "pressured," but at the end, *you* decided to engage in criminal acts rather than face job consequences (e.g. being fired)--that makes the consequences your responsibility. Once you commit a criminal or otherwise knowingly wrongful act, you are liable for the costs or damages of it, and could also face criminal liability. The law does not consider job pressure a lawful reason to do what is otherwise wrongful or criminal.


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