Q. What may an employer say about why an employee left or was fired?
A. You are not required 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. The best course is to simply say the employee has left and not to provide details.
Under certain circumstances and depending on what is said, the former employee could have a claim for defamation if the employer discusses why an employee was fired or is leaving the company. Unless the employee agrees on what should be said about his or her departure, say as little as possible.