Suppose one of your employees
informs you that your foreman, call
him "Joe," is taking building materials
from your site and using them to
build a state-of-the-art tree house for
his children. Other employees can't
substantiate the charge, and when
you confront Joe with the allegation,
he denies it. Still, it makes you
uncomfortable, so you fire him.
Several weeks later, you receive a
call from a builder you know who is
considering hiring Joe. He wants to
know why Joe was fired.
If your heart isn't racing and your
hands aren't sweating, they should
be, because you're about to
encounter the law of defamation.
When asked to provide references
for ex-employees, employers are frequently
trapped between their desire