“Other employees and interested third parties, including clients, need only reasonably be told that the employee is no longer with the organization and who they can direct their work or any questions to,” he continued.
Really, this should go without saying but clearly that isn’t always the case. Remind your employees that if they absolutely have to share any information about an ex-employee’s departure, they should, under no circumstance, embellish the story even a little.
“The majority of cases involving defamation by an employer involve an employer who has alleged but not demonstrated cause for termination,” reveals Berger – so drum it into your employees that they shouldn’t even insinuate someone was terminated if, officially, they weren’t.
“Be open to a mutually acceptable message with the ex-employee,” suggests Berger.
“Even in contentious situations, an agreement can often be reached about the employee taking early retirement, pursuing other opportunities, or simply that the employee is no longer with the company,” he added. “Stick with this agreed upon messaging and receive consent from the ex-employee before providing any references.”