Can a business that you were a customer at contact your employer and complain about you even though you did not give them the right to contact your place of employment?

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Can a business that you were a customer at contact your employer and complain about you even though you did not give them the right to contact your place of employment?

I was a customer at a car dealership where I had extremely bad service; the employees were rude and not helpful. They were unwilling to address the issue of my car. I also work at a dealership and know the service manager of the dealership (I used to work with her). She contacted my work, which I never authorized her to call me at my work number, and discussed my business with a co-worker of mine. She called a former co-worker of mine and threatened to come into my work screw up my world. And she contacted my managers and now I am suspended. They shouldn’t have involve my employer, am I right?

Asked on February 9, 2012 under Personal Injury, Michigan

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

There is no law saying that someone cannot call your employer or co-worker to complain about you, to discuss your behavior someplace, etc. If she made any untrue factual statements about it, that would be defamation--though true factual statements, even if negative, or opinions, even if very unflattering, are not defamation. If she released any private, personal, or confidential information which was provided to the dealership on a confidential basis, for the purpose of a potential or actual car sale (e.g. bank account, credit score, etc. information), that could be a violation of certain rights which you have to privacy. But if she "just" called and complained bitterly about you, that is unprofessional and inapprorpriate, but not illegal.


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