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Can I sue/counter-sue for wrongful termination/defamation and will giving them 50$ be taken legally as admission of guilt?

Pittsburgh, PA |

2 days ago I was written up for 'not being able to follow instructions' on false pretenses. both the manager and the district manager lied about the circumstances surrounding the write up (the manager lied about his instructions to me and the district manager lied about being there). They refused to show me, or even view, the security footage. And they never gave me a copy. They then humiliated me in front of customers and chased me off the grounds. Worked a normal shift last night. Got called in to work this morning, told that 50$ is missing from my safe drops last night and if I don't give them this money they will prosecute me for theft, and then terminated. I have a witness to support my version of events and am 100% certain that the video will also support my version of events.

There are audio and video recordings of some of this. had trouble with prepaid visa; next morning (day off) called in by GM. says my drawer is short $120. thought I was going to help figure out what happened. board of inquiry instead. assistant manager present. Only DM and GM should have been. GM says he told me to refund the customer and let it go. in reality explained card terminal; said I would need to refund first. tried 4 times. called back. gm says let it go. GM goes to last fri; claims he said not to come in 3 times and I wasn't needed; friend stayed late to stock. In reality I came in and helped both of them stock and that conversation never happened. DM claims she was there when he told me not to come in. actually left before I arrived that day. after stocking 3 of us go for smoke. discuss new guy. boss tells me to ride herd for 2 hours but no more. next day is normal got called in early today, told money is missing from my shift, I'm fired, if I dont pay 50$ they will prosecute me.

Attorney Answers 2

Posted

I advise you to contact an employment attorney in your area and discuss this in detail with him or her. Unless your employer violated (or will violate) federal anti-discrimination laws or your employment or union contract (if any) by terminating you, I don't see a wrongful termination suit since employment in Pennsylvania is "at will", but that is not for me to decide on the basis of just the information you posted above. You need someone to listen to your entire story and ask you just the right questions to determine whether you were or could be wrongfully terminated.

You may very well have a defamation suit or more. I certainly wouldn't want to be working there under those circumstances. Good luck to you.

If my answer was helpful to you, I would appreciate if you would mark it either "helpful" or "best answer" if you feel that applies, as AVVO gives us rating points based on feedback. Thank you! Please note that the above answer is not to be construed as legal advice. It is my personal opinion based on your question, and it was given without obtaining the detailed information that I would normally request in order to render comprehensive legal advice. I advise you to consult with a local attorney of your choosing to obtain specific legal advice. The fact that I answered your question does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and me.

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3 comments

Asker

Posted

I absolutely don't want to be there under those conditions, but I also don't want a theft on my record. I might have forgotten to pay for a drink when a customer distracted me once or twice but I'm not a thief, and I can't afford to give them 50$ out of my paycheck to prevent them from prosecuting me. that's money I have to live on and I'm making minimum wage. There's definitely a lot more to this. I had to cut over 3/4 of it because of the character limit.

Asker

Posted

also I've been advised that should I have a wrongful discharge case it might be viewed as an admission of guilt to give them the 50$ out of my paycheck.

Rochelle S. Rabin

Rochelle S. Rabin

Posted

I'm sorry -- I can see where they have you in a bind. The only thing I can say is to talk to a local attorney who can help you and maybe contact the company on your behalf.

Posted

look for lawyers that handle or specialize in Unemployment Compensation cases. You may have a defense if you are in fact innocent.

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1 comment

Asker

Posted

I am, in fact, innocent, but I only worked there for 2 or 3 weeks so I'm not sure that I qualify for any kind of unemployment benefits. If that's not the reason for the unemployment compensation specialist, could you expand a little bit?

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