False accusations of fraud are very unpalatable and can come as a shock, especially in the workplace.
The natural response of an innocent employee falsely accused is to be angry and defensive, with a feeling of betrayal, especially when you have given your all to the service of the workplace.
Accusations at the workplace may come with two consequences; termination of work or criminal prosecution. None of these is something to joke with or handle easily anyhow. That is why you need to move forward and plan the course of action you need to take next. To help you with that, here are the top tips that might come in handy if you’re accused of fraud in your workplace.
1. Remain Calm
Keeping your cool in situations like this can’t be underestimated. It is okay to get angry or upset, but you are responsible for how you handle these emotions. As a professional, you must know how to handle difficult situations. Now is the time to put your knowledge to good use.
Be careful of the words you speak. Don’t throw accusations, curses, foul words, or insults at the accuser. If you have an honest reputation, it may be hard for your HR and other colleagues to believe the accusations. Take advantage of this and don’t worsen the situation by being aggressive.
Take positive action, starting with an online search for legal assistance in your area. For example, if you got arrested in Orlando for a complaint against you, you can reach out for legal assistance from Orlando bail bonds to settle the dispute peacefully.
2. Ask Specific Questions
You don’t want to be in the dark about the accusation against you and the consequences. Awareness of the situation would help you understand how best you can handle the situation, protect and defend yourself, and find the best legal representation to hire.
Some of the questions you need to consider are:
- What would be the consequences of the accusation of fraud in your workplace?
- Would it be handled internally by suspension or termination of employment?
- Would the investigations be handed over to the police?
- What are the next moves you should take?
Don’t forget that in the midst of all this, you must not let your emotions get the best of you. The things you say may be used against you even if you are innocent.
3. Refute The Accusations
Never be forced out of pressure or fear to succumb to accusations even when you are innocent. You must stand on your ground and refute the allegations. Offer a simple and detailed explanation of the complaint against you.
Sometimes, wrong accusations can be borne out of miscommunication or misunderstanding and can be addressed when the accused explains. It could also be a complex situation. You may have to go back to emails or other materials to support your claims. Amid the case, ensure to refute allegations, maintain your innocence, and remain confident.
4. Cooperate With Investigations
Why would you evade investigations when you have nothing to hide? With or without your permission, investigations will still take place. It is wise to cooperate with investigations as it would earn you the opportunity to share your part of the story rather than being absent.
It is essential to have a voice. The investigations might even lead them to evidence that will vindicate you. By answering all questions and doing what you are supposed to do, you prove that you have nothing to hide, and you are ready to see the investigations through to the end.
5. Seek Legal Representation
Once you know the accusation against you and how the investigations will go, you should start looking for a reliable and experienced legal representation. This step is essential because you need a legal professional to speak on your behalf. A legal representative knows the best thing to say at each time. Seek one to help you handle the case, especially before it gets out of hand.
6. Document All Details
When accusations are leveled against an employee, it brings about a remarkable turn of events.
You must write down everything that happens. Record the details of how the interrogation went and every other significant information. These details might help your legal professional know the steps to take and what to say.
If there is a change in how your colleagues relate with you, put it down and inform your HR investigator about it.
Also if there are cases of threat or any suspicious activity, document them, and tell your legal representative and your employers. Make sure nothing goes by without entering your records.
7. Know Your Rights
It would be easier for you to clear your name and protect yourself when you know your rights. So, you should hire a lawyer.
A lawyer would be able to explain your rights according to the law and everything you need to know to navigate through the investigation process. Besides, you may have questions about your right to privacy, the right to review your HR records, the right to refuse a lie detector test, etc. Hiring an attorney would give you correct answers and the knowledge you require.
A lawyer can also help you choose the proper actions to avoid committing things that can aggravate the situation.
8. Present Your Evidence
One of the things you need to vindicate yourself from wrongful accusations is your evidence. Your attorney will find your pieces of evidence helpful as it would help them prove your innocence in the case.
Present all information exactly as it is or as you remember it, as they could serve as evidence. It does not exclude documents like receipts, messages, and other things that are related to the matter on the ground.
Even in the absence of physical documents, write down everything you can recollect about any interaction with the accuser or the subject of the accusation. No single information is useless for your lawyer to use to prove your innocence.
9. Present Witnesses
If there are co-workers who have one or two pieces of evidence to prove your innocence, you should present them to your attorney.
A witness could be someone present at the time of incidence or someone who has information about the accused, accuser, or subject of accusation. Bringing a third party into the situation may be a little hard but will be very helpful.
The more witnesses you have, the better. Present them and request them to be included in the case as a witness.
Going through a workplace rort accusation is a tough time. The tips discussed above can help you get through this period and clear your name. However, it’s best to remain honest and truthful always.
Tell your attorney about everything, including the mistakes you have made. That way, they can find any loopholes that can worsen your case and find ways to go about it.