My question involves defamation in the state of: WI
About one year ago, I was working as a GM in a bar when the business was sold to a new party. After working there for a few months, I was let go by the new owners. They wanted to eliminate my position and run it themselves to save some money. We left on good terms and they even gave me a severance package for my contributions in the transition.
Fast forward a year, and even though I have 10+ years in a GM position in the food/beverage industry, have not been able to secure a position in the field. It happens, and was not too concerned, until I went to an interview a few months ago. During the interview, the owner said to me that the previous employer gave me a terrible review. The main point he mentioned was that I was the cause that they were getting sued.
The reason for the suit goes back to when the business was sold. The previous owner ran satellite tv in the bar. In order to save money, he had a residential account and got extra boxes for his bar which was near his house. I know it should have been set up as a business account, but it was his choice. When the new owners came in, they wanted a quick transition. I told them how the tvs were set up, and gave them the choices of cable or satellite. I explained how the previous owner set it up, and thats how they choose to do it as well. So they put a new account in their name, put the tvs in their cabin up north, and ordered seven "extra" boxes which they used in the bar. From my understanding, sometime after I left they got in trouble for showing PPV'S on weekends and got a suit from the satellite provider.
My question is, if they are telling future employers that I was the reason for them being sued, do I have a case? I only explained the means that the previous employer did to have service in the bar. I did not contact any provider nor sign any agreement for any contracts. I was told by them to hook up the boxes when they arrived, and that is my only contribution to their mess. If they are telling this line to all employers that question them, then I can understand why I am not being chosen for work.