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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 49829
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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Hi I was offered a job. I provided 3 excellent references &

Customer Question

Hi I was offered a job. I provided 3 excellent references & a satisfactory CRB as required. However my prospective employer spoke to a commissioner about me & they were negative about me. This individual & I had previous conflict, when i was employed in a previous position. He has made personal & subjective statements about me. The job offer was withdrawn by my prospective employer as the commissioner allegedley stated it would impact on relations with my employer & them should I be employed. Can I take action against this commissioner. This was an excellent job with a high salary. To state I am disappointed is an understatement.

Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 4 years ago.
Hello, my name is Ben and it is my pleasure to be able to assist with your question today. Please let me know if this commissioner provided their opinion as part of a formal reference request by the new employer?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

No I think it was informal at the end of a meeting.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

no it was informal at the end of a meeting.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 4 years ago.
Hi sorry I was offline by the time you had replied. Taking action against the commissioner will not be easy. There are only two potential claims you can consider and neither is easy or even applicable here. 

The first is a claim for negligence under the common law of tort. However, this will usually only happen if they had provided a formal reference to a prospective or new employer. if this was an informal chat where only personal opinions were exchanged that may not apply. In any event, the protection ned this would exist whee the past employer has provided a negligent reference that does not reflect the truth and it will allow you to seek damages from them. 

The other claim is defamation but that is extremely comples and very expensive, over £10,000 to make. Also it is unlikely that it will qualify as the untrue comments would need to have been made sufficiently public, and making them to one or a few people will not qualify. 

So unfortunately your options are rather limited in this case