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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    9

    Default Being sued for Defamation of Character and Slander

    This is happening in New Jersey.

    Upon quitting our jobs my friend and I wrote a letter to My Boss's Boss. The intent of this was to give our reasons for quitting so that seemed more professional. Everything in this letter is entirely 100% truth and accurate.

    My ex-manager is saying this letter has ruined her reputation and she is now instructing her lawyer to file suit against my friend and I. She has never even seen this letter. She is unaware that it is all truth, yet I am going to be sued.

    Here is the letter, some grammar mistakes I did not catch as I wrote this quickly.

    We regret to inform you

    We, X and X do hereby find these to be grievances held within the Tuesday morning Corporation. More specifically related to that of Store Ocean 501 and its manager, Y.
    Within this store there is a constant breeching of corporate policy by Y, resulting in a hindrance of employee production, and placing an unfair burden us. We now list some of these grievances, but it is no way an attempt to list all of these grievances as it would be impossible to do so.
    First grievance held with the manager, is verbal harassment and attitude. The employees of store 501 are constantly “talked down to”. One employee was told not to expect her annual review and raise because “all you do is stand at the register”.
    This is entirely untrue. The employee in question runs register, merchandise’s, cleans, does more than the majority of the markdown directives, and does everything expected of them and has been a loyal Tuesday Morning employee longer than anyone else currently at the store.
    Another incident of such an event was during inventory. Inventory was to be completed on a Saturday. I (X) had worked a Fourteen hour day for Tuesday morning that day, at the age of 17. The next I had requested off for my 18th birthday. Inventory was to be completed on Saturday, although it was not finished, even though we did work as hard as we possibly could. I (X) and Maureen, my assistant manager, had run the entire inventory process, as Y did not read the book and asked Maureen to handle it for her.
    Maureen has been in retail for 20+ years, worked at many major companies worked at all the levels, including being a manager, regional Manager, buyer, got some of the highest raises for women, and got college funds from a corporation so that she would work for them while going to college. No slouch in the retail world.
    We ran it to the best of our ability. Back to the story, the next day, my birthday I was called in, instead of anyone else. Just my Assistant Manager, my Manager, and me the only associate who had the day requested off. I obliged and came in, stating I could be there for only 3 hours. I stayed for 8. After I said that I must go as I was late for a family event for my birthday, I was given an awful attitude and one of pure ungratefulness.
    Maureen has since quit because of the atittude, and treatment she was given by Y, and she made it VERY clear upon her departure that those were the reasons why.
    We constantly go above and beyond anything that can be expected out of a person in my position of store associate. We deal with all of the technical problems, from the registers to the kiosk. We are the ones who deals with Store Systems Support. We are the ones who completes the given directives. We help to get all of the paperwork done. I (Wayne) program our weekly schedules and Mike as well, and for an amount of time I (Wayne) was the only one who knew how to use the new program, Mike has since learned and Marguerite is starting to get it. I am the one who fills out our store order forms for the upcoming supplies we will need. We do everything expected of anyone in their, manager included. We are certainly not paid to do all of the jobs that we do.

    Than, we (X), are told to “step up”. A new instance of this was when she was in Dallas she asked why we Mike did not step-up, even though we had completed the 2 page list of things to do she gave us and got even more done that our regional had asked of us. There is no more stepping up that we could possibly do. We handle every responsibility expected of everyone, manager included. We nearly run that entire store, and we are constantly brought down, as are all of the other employees.
    Another grievance with the manager is language and vulgarity. We have never heard such a mouth on any individual in my life. We can’t believe the number of times we hear things like “This is F*cking hopeless” or “What the F*ck”, and “Why is there sh*t on the floor”. Every day we work with our manager, is us trying to get all of the work done that is piling up while she complains.
    She will complain about one employee not getting enough boxes done, one standing at the register all day, others being lazy, and every single one of these accusations is false. We all work as much and always more than what is expected out of us. We are days late unloading truck shipments, granted. But when she only allows one person to unbox in those two days for 5 hours, we do not expect 400 boxes to be done that quickly.
    She has constantly hindered the progress of everyone in the store and every employee is giving up because she lowers the entire morale of the store. While our work surmounts, of merchandising, customers at the register, boxes needing to be opened, and a store in desperate need of cleaning, my manager will do a day of paperwork for 45 minutes, have 5-6 smoking breaks, a lunch break, 4 phone calls to chat, open some candy in the store, and than possibly complete 2-3 carriages of merchandise all day. During all this we get to hear every complaint that she may have.
    Another grievance within this store is cash count/drawer changes and fixes. During a certain period of time register were constantly going short. Every day that one employee worked the drawer went short. Different amounts. This employee quit before anything could be proven, although it was well known she was stealing. For the first few months of this occurrence nothing was reported and our manager told us that we were SUPPOSED to fix the drawer, and split the difference and put the money in to make them eve. I (X) put HUNDREDS of dollars into that drawer. Jean Tschachler also put money into the drawer ($100+) Justin Cotrell, who has since voluntary left, also put money into the drawer. None of us were aware that we were not supposed to put money into the drawer to make it even. We were told to, so we did. Later on a new assistant manager found out and made us aware that we were not supposed to, and then I read the store operations manual and was appalled. My manager than proceeded, during this time when we were unaware, to tell our regional manager that none of us had put money in and told us not to say we had.
    Another grievance is that she does not make us aware of current corporate directives. While she was in Dallas, our regional manager had come into the store, and I was asked, as I was active manager on that day, why they had not been completed. We had not completed writing sku’s on sheets and comforters because my manager had told me not to. And the crystal directive no one in our store was even aware of.
    This manager has had a history of problems keeping employees. In the last year and half we have lost many employees. In just the time we have been there Scott quit, Pete quit, Anne moved to another store, Justin quit, Amanda quit, Tabitha quit, Dan quit, Maureen quit, Phil was fired, Kelly either quit or was fired, Erik Ireland was fired for attending too many church events and taking days off for them, and I believe there were more that escape me at this point in time. Without immediate action, we will be quitting.
    We have always proven ourselves assets to Tuesday Morning Inc. We have had the occasional customer complaint, but we have also received greeting cards written by customers who were incredibly pleased with our service. We have had e-mails go through higher members of corporate and come back down to us for our exceptional service.
    She, on the other hand has not. The best assistant manager I ever met, Maureen Ultimo that we had, quit, once again because of Marguerite’s attitude. Than after being without an assistant manager for months and her being told to hire one and even getting applications, she has told us that she does not even want one. This is ridiculous, and the employees of Store 501 need no longer to be subjected to this kind of Management.
    Another thing that is commonplace is to maybe straighten the store for an hour at night, if that, and than let it run a mess until our regional manager is scheduled to come in. Than suddenly it is a mad dash for everyone else to clean the store while she does the same thing as always, which is very little. Every single time I (X) am the one entirely cleaning out the register area. Not a bad thing, but we are told not to put damages there and not to leave things there, and make sure things are scanned if they are damaged. Than after being told this, she will proceed to fill the Register area with her coffees, sodas, etc, and then I, like clockwork, once again am picking up the same things. This is one of many pointless time constraints that consume our work day.
    There are far too many things to keep listing. This letter is not only a letter to make the corporation and those that need to be, aware of certain things in store 501, but as well as our letter of proposed resignation. We have worked too hard and given too much to this corporation to have this be our treatment.
    We regret to inform you that we can not, however, give two weeks of notice for our leaving. The treatment and attitude we will receive for speaking of these truths is one unjust, and it would not be worth it for us. We would work for a week if need be as long as Marguerite is not in the building. Our departure will put the store in a bad way with the new hours, but things have pushed us past the edge and it is not proper or right that we or any other employee of Store 501 should be subjected to. So we regret to inform you of our immediate departure, and if anything happens with this current manager in the future, maybe our return can be worked out, but until than we must resign our positions of Senior Store Associate and Store Associate/Temp Key respectively. Effective immediately.
    Regretfully,
    X
    X
    I think I am not in trouble of losing the case. Is there any legal recourse I have to her, as this will hinder my ability in getting future employment. And as I am being sued on what I said, which was only truth?

    If anyone has any input I thank you.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    75,466

    Default Re: Being sued for Defamation of Character and Slander

    If you're actually sued, consult a lawyer and have the allegations in the complaint along with your letter reviewed by your lawyer. If you're a homeowner you may be able to get coverage under your homeowner's policy.

    Most threats to bring a defamation suit go nowhere, and worrying about what might happen won't change anything.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: Being sued for Defamation of Character and Slander

    I dont see how you 'defamed' her character in this letter. My guess is it's smoke and she got in trouble with said company for her actions. Now, she wants blood, yours to be exact. Unless she can prove she never did any of the things you mentioned, I dont see how she can prove her case. The burden of proof will be on her to prove the allegations are untrue, not on you to disprove that you defamed her

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    9

    Default Re: Being sued for Defamation of Character and Slander

    -Thank you!

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