If I work for a school and my employer is trying to get me fired based on untrue “facts” that were all word of mouth, is there anything thatI can do?

UPDATED: Dec 15, 2011

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If I work for a school and my employer is trying to get me fired based on untrue “facts” that were all word of mouth, is there anything thatI can do?

I work for a school that I recently graduated from 2 years ago. I am friends with a student that is a senior there that I have been friends with since I was a senior. They have recently found out that I am gay and the student is too, and it is claiming a relationship. However we are only friends. The school is using information based off of claims which are untrue. My friend’s parents had mentioned my name to the attendance clerk for the campus and she is now claiming that they called me his boyfriend, which they did not. They also twisted what the student had said when they talked to him.

Asked on December 15, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Texas


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

A critical issue is whether in working for the school, you have any employment contract or are subject to a union/collective bargaining agreement. If you are, then you need to reference the terms of that contract or agreement for the rules affecting discipline and termination. If you are not governed by some individual or collective contract, however, you can most likely be terminated at will by your employer, the school.

However, even at will termination may have some limits. Federal law does not protect sexual orientation, but a number of states (e.g. NJ, NY, CA) do. If yoiu are in a state which prohibits discrimination or harassment in employment on the basis of sexual orientation, you may have a cause of action and grounds to fight any termination.

Also, if the allegations against you are not true but are damaging your reputation, you may be able to bring a defamation suit against those publically (i.e. to any other people) making the allegations.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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