Work may be going well until one day your boss tells you there is a problem. Suddenly, are accused of some type of employee fraud.
How do you respond to such damaging accusations?
It can be difficult to think on your feet in what feels like an interrogation. But after the initial conversation with your employer, it is time to consider your rights and options. Never hesitate to discuss these allegations with an experienced defense attorney in your area.
Call Kademenos, Wisehart, Hines, Dolyk & Wright Co. LPA at (419) 625-7770 to schedule a free consultation. Let us review the details, consider your options, and advise you on how to move forward. Early intervention from a lawyer could be the difference between facing charges, getting the charges reduced, or dismissed.
When Employers Accuse Employees of Fraud
The first thing you need to do after being accused of employee fraud is to find out the exact accusations being leveled against you. What does your supervisor or co-worker believe you have done?
Politely ask for the details in writing. If you (or they) wish to have an in-person talk, ask that a member of your company’s human resources department be present. Take detailed notes of this conversation.
A lot of fraud accusations stem from simple mistakes and misunderstandings.
If the allegations against you are based on a miscommunication, you can attempt to clarify what happened right away. However, be careful. Do not admit fault. Do not apologize automatically, or without thinking.
Any apology could be seen as taking responsibility. When it is not a simple miscommunication you can quickly fix, you should say as little as possible.
Are They Calling the Police?
What you do next depends on whether your employer is handling things internally or alerting the authorities.
If the issue is internal, you have very few rights other than to defend yourself. This means carefully considering the allegations and presenting your supervisor with a statement defending your innocence.
But, if your employer has or intends to call law enforcement, call an attorney immediately. You always have the right to a lawyer. It may be difficult to have your attorney at work meetings, but you should always have your attorney with you when you speak with the police.
Being Written up at Work for Alleged Fraud
There may situations in which your employer resolved the allegedly fraudulent incident at work and does not go to the police. Your employer may do so because no one is interested in pressing charges. Be aware that you will likely be written up and have a record of the incident in your employment file.
When you are wrongfully accused of illegal behavior and unnecessarily disciplined at work, you want to know what you can do about it. The truth is that there’s not much you can do at this time.
If the allegations of fraud did not lead to criminal charges, then it is a purely internal matter. Your employer has the discretion to handle things as they see fit.
You can speak to an attorney about the issue, but your best chance of improving things is to speak with human resources. Having an honest conversation and backing up your actions with evidence can give the department and your supervisor additional insight into what happened.
Have Fraud Allegations Ruined Your Reputation?
If the accusations of fraud were not handled discretely and the false rumors of fraud spread, causing your reputation significant harm, you may have a claim for defamation against your employer or an individual involved.
However, libel or slander can be difficult to prove. You would need to demonstrate that your employer published or broadcast the false statements that were explicitly about you, or that you were easily identifiable. You must then be able to show that this damaged your reputation.
Accused of Fraud? Call Our Lawyers Today
If a co-worker or manager accused you of employee fraud, call Kademenos, Wisehart, Hines, Dolyk & Wright Co. LPA as soon as possible. You may not have many options if the accusations remain internal, but we can prepare a defense on your behalf if the situation becomes a criminal investigation.