As an employee, you have the right to engage in protected conduct, such as requesting leave, filing a workers’ compensation claim or reporting wrongdoing by your employer to the appropriate authorities. However, an employer who is unhappy with your conduct may take retaliatory action against you in defiance of the law.
You may feel tempted to try to stop the retaliation by leaving your employment voluntarily and seeking work elsewhere. Unfortunately, however, there are several ways in which employer retaliation can follow you even after you leave your job.
According to Chron.com, your employer may retaliate against you by sabotaging your attempts to get a new one. He or she may give you a negative reference consisting of false information about you. Alternatively, you may get no reference from your former employer at all.
However, post-employment retaliation can extend beyond your attempts to get a new job. The attempts to damage your reputation may involve filing a spurious lawsuit or false criminal charges against you. The retaliation can escalate even further to acts of violence against you, your family or your property. Examples include theft, vandalism or assault.
Employer retaliation can also take the form of harassment, which may continue even after you leave your job. For example, your employer may stalk you or have you followed. He or she may send threatening communications to your home or new place of employment.
Simply leaving your job may not be enough to stop the retaliation. However, the law is on your side, and there are options available to you. It is not acceptable for your employer to punish you for doing the right thing.