I resigned on good terms from my last job, was told I was welcome to come back, I was given a party, gift card, flowers & balloons. Then a prospective employers calls for a reference, and is told I am Not Eligible for Rehire, is that defamation or lible? That shows that I was "fired" or "fired for cause", which I was not. Is this actionable? Mental distress, affecting livelihood, etc?!?
Yes, you might have a claim for defamation and interference in prospective economic advantage if you lost the subsequent job on account of your former employer's bad reference. However, you will need to show through clear and convincing evidence that your former employer's false reference was motivated by malice, and was not just the product of a mistake (for example, your former employer confused you with another employee whom it had discharged for cause). If your former employer's bad reference was the product of negligence rather than malice, you might have a claim for negligent misrepresentation. For a proper evaluation, you're going to need to discuss the facts of your case with an employment lawyer.
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