What are the rules on giving truthful references about former employees?

Q. An employer asked us for a job verification on an employee we fired. The request includes a written consent form from the worker allowing the query. Can I release any and all information regarding the former employee’s history with us?

A. Yes, as long as the disclosure is truthful and not prohibited by any contract, common law or statutory right of the employee.

An employer is presumed to be acting in good faith and immune from civil liability when disclosing information about a current or former employee’s job performance to an employer upon request of the current or former employee.

Employers lose that immunity if it is shown by clear and convincing evidence that the employer disclosed information that the employer knew or should have known was false, materially misleading, rendered with reckless disregard for the truth or which the employer is prohibited from disclosing by contract or law.