Employee Misconduct in Oregon
When an employee is accused of any type of misconduct, it is always in the best interests of the company to immediately investigate the matter. This can include employee issues such as:
- Sexual harassment
- Substance abuse
- Workplace violence
An independent ethics investigation can determine the validity of the allegations, and help a company take the correct steps when addressing the situation. Employee misconduct can have a damaging affect on your business and reputation, and can even lead to claims and lawsuits against your company. Under the legal doctrine of respondeat superior, often also known as vicarious liability, an employer can sometimes be held responsible for certain actions of the part of his or her employees. Specifically, if an employee engages in some sort of wrongdoing ‘within the scope of his or her employment’, an employer can be held responsible for the resulting damage against a third party – even if the employer did not authorize the behavior, or even know what the employee was doing.
Since Oregon courts can hold employers responsible for their employees’ misconduct, it is essential in many cases to undertake an investigation to understand exactly what happened and who was responsible. An attorney experienced in ethics investigations not only can help you determine whether and what kinds of misconduct occurred, but can also help you understand how such misconduct might affect your company’s potential liability. Contact a Portland employment lawyer at once if you have an employee issue that needs to be investigated.
Portland Employment Law Attorney
Ethics investigations can help a business get to the bottom of employee problems and misconduct. Management needs reliable and unbiased information to make the best decisions possible regarding an employee situation. Such investigations may also be beneficial to employees who have been falsely accused of misconduct and want to clear their name. Under Oregon’s unemployment law (ORS 657.176(2)(a), (b)), employees who have been discharged or suspended because of work-related misconduct are not eligible to receive unemployment benefits, so being cleared of misconduct accusations can also be essential to protecting the financial interests of innocent employees.
Potentially serious legal matters should always be investigated by an outside attorney. A skilled investigator can ensure all of the documents related to matter are compiled, and conduct proper interviews with the employee and any witnesses. Many times an investigation will reveal the need for additional employee training, as well as changes to internal policies and procedures, and the company’s code of conduct. Having a skilled attorney to help guide the inquiry – investigating the allegations of misconduct, helping the employer understand Oregon’s laws regarding various forms of employee misconduct, and then helping the employer formulate a plan of action for the future – can be invaluable in helping to make the entire process as painless as possible.
HKM Employment Attorneys is a professional employee law firm that conducts ethics investigations into employee misconduct. We have a comprehensive understanding of state and federal employment laws, and can help you resolve any employee issue. Our firm will thoroughly investigate the situation, and provide you with a detailed summary of the findings as well as practical solutions to resolve the issue. We have many years of experience safeguarding the rights and interests of employers. Attorneys at our firm are dedicated professionals that can give you important legal advice and guidance on any employee matters. With over 40 years of experience, you can count on our firm for professional legal representation.
Contact a Portland employment law attorney for qualified legal assistance with an ethics investigation.