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I was terminated without warning and accused falsely; can I still receive unemployment benefits and alter this allegation?

Seattle, WA |

This manager has been documented for harassment and contributing to a toxic work environment. I was part of a group of now-former employees that complained (Nov '13). I believe she recently learned about these complaints, and fabricated a reason to fire me. She is now also calling me 'dishonest' to current employees, which I feel is slander. WA is an at-will state, but what I need is a settlement from the company (Interface/Flor) since this was wrongful allegations and done without warning.

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Attorney answers 1


Washington is an at-will state. However, if you can establish liability based upon your being terminated for retaliatory reasons in support of and with those who were complaining of a hostile work environment a cause of action is established. As long as you can prove that there is no truth in the oral statement being made to impede your character and show the intent to defame, slander may be proven. Truth is a defense to any defamatory statement. As far as a severance packet being worked out, additional information is needed e.g. how long have you worked there? any disciplinary concerns, what were the fabricated reasons used to terminate you? What is the purported dishonesty based upon? Would the company prefer to settle with you or provide a severance packet to avoid more liability? What would be the advantage to Interface/Flor to settle with you?

This answer is predicated on the facts provided in which the lawyer cannot confirm or verify. I do not represent you as we do not have an attorney-client relationship until a fee agreement is signed by you and me. I am licensed in Washington State and California. Beverly Grant Law Firm, P.S.