Good faith and bad references — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax Business Management Daily

Good faith and bad references

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Q. How do I give a reference for a worker I had to fire?

A. You do not have to give any reference for a separated employee, and most employers choose to provide only position and dates of employment. If you would like to provide more detail, however, Pennsylvania law permits employers to respond in good faith to requests for references by providing truthful information about a former employee’s job performance. If you have reason to believe that the worker could pose a safety threat, you may want to alert the prospective employer. Some courts have found employers who do not disclose such information to be liable for providing a “negligent reference.” 

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