Does a department store have the right to notify my employer after shoplifting? 7 Answers as of December 21, 2010

I was caught shoplifting at a department store by loss prevention. Does the department store have the right to contact my employer? I have not even gone to court for it yet and I am 19 years old. Loss prevention asked me where I work but I thought it was to make sure I had income to pay for the fine. Do they have any right to contact my employer?

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Law Offices of Ryan P. Murphy
Law Offices of Ryan P. Murphy | Ryan P. Murphy
To be honest, that is a tough question. They probably took your information down as procedure. If they do contact your employer, you might be able to sue them.

Should you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact my office at your earliest convenience.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 12/21/2010
Law Offices of Philip P. De Luca
Law Offices of Philip P. De Luca | Philip De Luca
It is not likely that the store will contact your employer. If it does, and you are determined innocent, you may have grounds to sue for defamation of character and related causes of action. It would therefore, not be wise for the store to contact your employer. Moreover, common sense dictates that the store would not want you to lose your job, and therefore, your ability to pay restitution, if any may be forthcoming.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 12/20/2010
Law Office of Jeff Yeh
Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
It is not a matter of right, it is a matter of choice. Anyone can contact your employer for any reason. What you should be focused on is the criminal case that is on the horizon. You should contact a lawyer, because petty theft is a crime of moral turpitude, and you definitely do not want this on your record at your age.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 12/20/2010
Law Office of Andrew Roberts
Law Office of Andrew Roberts | Andrew Stephen Roberts
No- the only time they can contact your employer is if they sue you and want to garnish your wages.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 12/20/2010
Dennis Roberts, a P.C.
Dennis Roberts, a P.C. | Dennis Roberts
No they don't and it is an invasion of privacy. If you get fired you should consult a lawyer and sue the bastards.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 12/20/2010
    Nelson & Lawless
    Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
    The store would have no protected right to contact your employer, except to verify employment as you claimed. They should not disclose your criminal charges, if that is what you are asking. They would risk legal action if they did.

    More importantly, you face charges that could put in jail, and most police and prosecutors will happily tell you that 95% of people convict themselves by trying to be 'helpful and cooperative'. It is likely already too late to advise you to exercise 5th Amendment rights to be quiet and call a lawyer, as every cop show on TV correctly teaches. Unless you know how to effectively represent yourself in court, hire an attorney who does. If this is in California, and you are serious about hiring counsel, feel free to contact me. If your attorney can negotiate a civil compromise agreement before the store actually files criminal charges, you will be much better off than having to pay to defend such charges.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 12/20/2010
    Robert Mortland
    Robert Mortland | Law Office of Robert Mortland
    They will most likely not contact your employer but nothing is stopping them from calling and telling them truthful information. They may not contact your employer and lie but they may call and tell them what happened. However, it is not likely that they will call your employer. They likely asked who your employer is to determine if you were shoplifting or not. They may ask if you have a steady income and if you were able to afford what you are accused of shoplifting. The DA has a stronger case if you did not have a job and had no way of paying for the alleged stolen goods.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 12/20/2010
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