What are my rights if I was falsely accused of stealing and I was fired from my job due to the accusation?

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What are my rights if I was falsely accused of stealing and I was fired from my job due to the accusation?

I know I did not do it and then the next day, I found out that the company found the missing item and I was accused of placing the item back after being fired. I can be proved innocent if the company would take a look at the security video footage, which I requested for them to do in a letter. The company refused, even though the proof is in the video. Do I have a possible case in this situation? The reason why I was the one accused was because I was seen holding the missing item that same day, but I returned it and if it was found, the footage will expose whoever actually took the item.

Asked on August 10, 2015 under Employment Labor Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

The problem for you is that unless you have a written employment contract which sets out procedures or requirements for terminating your employment or other discipline, you are an employee at will and may be terminated at any time, for any reason, including an incorrect or false accusation. As an employee at will, you have no right to your job and no protectible interest in it as such, your employer is not required to listen to, consider, take into account, etc. your explanations, but can simply fire or terminate you if they choose. You also have no right to see the video footage, which is their video footage they can refuse to let you review this material.

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

The problem for you is that unless you have a written employment contract which sets out procedures or requirements for terminating your employment or other discipline, you are an employee at will and may be terminated at any time, for any reason, including an incorrect or false accusation. As an employee at will, you have no right to your job and no protectible interest in it as such, your employer is not required to listen to, consider, take into account, etc. your explanations, but can simply fire or terminate you if they choose. You also have no right to see the video footage, which is their video footage they can refuse to let you review this material.


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