What can I do to get unemployment or money from my previous employer if I was fired for giving a notice?

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What can I do to get unemployment or money from my previous employer if I was fired for giving a notice?

My previous employer, Stansell Dentistry, fired me for giving her a 2 week notice. I had previously spoken to her a month or so before informing her I was interested in possibly doing something different with my career and I informed her that I had my phlebotomy certification. When I was offered a new job, I immediately let her know and offered to work out 2 weeks to give her time to replace me so that I could train someone, as I had been there for over 2 years. She fired me for it instead. I filed a claim with the labor board and they have done nothing. I then filed unemployment, she appealed, we had a court hearing via phone, and it was ruled in favor of me yet I will somehow not be getting any unemployment money, even though I was out of work and had no pay for 2 weeks since I told my new job my start date would be 2 weeks later so that I could work out a notice for my previous employer. She also will not pay me my vacation pay I earned, and she is slandering my name to other people and businesses so that I will not be hired elsewhere. I want to take some kind of legal action against her, however I am not sure where to start.

Asked on November 1, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, North Carolina

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

1) An employer is not required to honor notice, but can treat your resignation as effective immediately; having given your resignation, you should not actually be eligible for unemployment, which may be why you are not receiving it.
2) In your state, your employer does not have to pay out unused vacation on termination of employment unless they actually had a voluntarily adopted policy of doing so--if they had such a policy, they have to pay you as per that policy, but it would be legal if they did not have any policy of paying vacation on termination.
3) Defamation is the making of untrue factual statements which damage your reputation. If she is telling people untrue negative facts about you, such as that you stole from your employer when you did not, that is defamation and you could sue her. (Speak to a personal injury attorney about doing this; the same lawyers who handle car accidents and slip and falls generally handle defamation cases.)
But true facts, even if they hurt you, are not defamation; and opinions, even if negative or unfair, are not defamation either, so she could say "John/Jane Doe was a bad employee" or "I don't think you should hire John/Jane Doe," since those are opinions. Again, only untrue facts which harm your reputation might be defamation which you could sue over.


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