Question: I recently received a letter from a lawyer representing my former employer. They’re saying I defamed the company for posting my thoughts on FaceBook. I want to know if this threat/lawsuit however you may call it has merit and if I should be worried. Thank you for your time and any advice you could offer.
Answer: You have one new notification: your former employer is not happy. The fact that you received this letter means four things: (a) your former employer viewed your post, (b) they felt that it disparages the company, (c) they felt that it could damage the company’s reputation and (d) they felt it was severe enough to warrant the expense of a lawyer.
Even if all four are true, their claim may not have merit. Statements that relate to your subjective experience, or statements that are 100% truthful, do not constitute defamation. Their letter might have merit, however, if your comments are untrue, misleading, attack someone’s character, or reveal sensitive or confidential information.
While you may not have done anything wrong, your former employer obviously disagrees, and it may result in expensive and time-consuming litigation if you don’t take proactive steps now.
First, make the post private or delete it altogether. Next, you should promptly consult a competent lawyer, in order to determine your options and to minimize your risk.
In the future, avoid posting about your employer to social media, or at least ensure that your posts are private.