What are my rights if my former employer has accused me of theft and is threatening criminal charges?

UPDATED: Jan 24, 2011

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What are my rights if my former employer has accused me of theft and is threatening criminal charges?

My former employer is accusing me of theft – no proof – no charges filed. I resigned at the conclusion of their “internal investigation”. When they advised me that the investigation was closed and they believed that I stole the money. I cooperated fully with the investigation (answering questions several times per day) and allowed them to search my car. I received an email accepting my resignation. Today I received a letter from them saying that I need to call immediately to discuss the “investigation” as the money has not yet been found. I was told that if I don’t call them, they may pursue a law enforcement investigation. They cannot tell me how much money I’m being accused of stealing from 09/10; the investigation launched 12/10. Do I have any rights?

Asked on January 24, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Indiana


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

Yes, of course you have rights and you should start exercising them.  Hire yourself an attorney and do not speak with your ex employer any more until you have one with you and let the lawyer call them back, not you.  I am assuming that you resigned at the conclusion of the internal investigation because they were making it uncomfortable for you work there.  Did they issue you any report? Do you have a copy?  You need to  make sure that you have the ability to gather together the proof you need to defend yourself but without more specifics her it is difficult to know how to guide you other than what has already been suggested.  Good luck.  

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