Attorney Advice |
July 25, 2021

What is Fraud or Misrepresentation in Employment?

Fraud or misrepresentation in employment occurs when employers make deliberately or intentionally false statements to bait current employees or job applicants into accepting their offer of employment. An individual who’s been subjected to fraudulent misrepresentation may have a claim against their employer and may be able to recover compensation for losses incurred due to the employer’s false statements. 

Examples of Fraudulent Misrepresentations

The most common examples of fraud or misrepresentation typically involve employers hiring an employee under false pretenses. For example, to make it seem like a job offer is more appealing than it actually is, an employer might persuade a job applicant to accept the job by promising the following: 

  • A certain salary
  • Bonuses
  • Raises or promotions
  • Titles or level of authority
  • Certain working conditions

Once the applicant accepts the job, however, the employer does not provide what was promised. 

For instance, if the applicant ends up taking the job from an employer that promised a higher salary than the salary being offered by another prospective employer, but ends up receiving a lower salary, the employee may have a claim against the employer. Another common example of fraudulent misrepresentation could involve an employer promising a raise and/or higher position to an employee who wants to quit and then reneging on the promises when the employee agreed to stay. 

Claims that involve the second example, however, are difficult to prove. You’ll have to prove that staying in the company resulted in damages and that your employer deliberately misrepresented terms or conditions of the job to persuade you to stay solely for the benefit of your employer. 

What Can I Do If I’m a Victim of Fraudulent Misrepresentation?

You can file a claim against your employer for fraud. To do so, you should satisfy the evidentiary requirements of fraud based on state laws. You must prove that your employer knowingly made false statements or promises with the intent to deceive you. You will likewise have to prove that if your employer did not intentionally misrepresent facts about your job, then you would have declined the offer and would currently be in a potentially more profitable job than you are in now.

On the other hand, it could be very challenging to prove employee misrepresentation. This is particularly true in cases where the only evidence the misrepresented employee has is an oral conversation between them and their employer. In addition, the employee might not be able to recover damages if the employer can prove and argue that the cause of misrepresentation was merely a misstatement or mistake. 

Seek Legal Advice from an Experienced California Employment Attorney

If you believe that your employer misrepresented facts to get you to accept an employment offer, it’s in your best interest to consult with an experienced California employment attorney for legal guidance. Here at Minnis & Smallets, our employment attorneys regularly help misrepresented employees obtain justice by pursuing compensation for the losses incurred due to the misrepresentation. Contact us online or call us to schedule your consultation with our California employment lawyer today.