Good News in the Fight Against Bad References

What can you do if a reference checking company like Allison & Taylor confirms you have a negative reference that is limiting your chances for employment?  Your options will depend on the nature of the negative input. Where your reference’s communication was inaccurate, malicious, or wrongful you may have the ability – through an attorney – to pursue legal recourse.

However, there are times when a reference’s negative input is not unlawful but is nonetheless restricting your ability to secure future employment.  In such instances,  this can sometimes be addressed through a Cease & Desist letter. These letters are sent by an attorney to the senior management of your former employer, alerting them to the negative reference’s identity and actions. (Oftentimes, the very act of offering a negative reference is against corporate guidelines, as typical policy is that only a former employee’s title/dates of employment should be confirmed.) In the interest of self-protection, the company will usually caution the negative reference not to offer additional comments or negative commentary again.

So, take heart – the prospects for combating further negative input from a reference are excellent. If concern about your references is causing you some anxiety, it’s never too soon to document – and address – what your references are truly saying about you.

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