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I worked for a company for a year and a half. It's a very large company and during that time, I was injured and was out of work on workman's comp which they tried not to pay me (but that's another issue altogether). I was an occasional worker, so I made my own schedule and I misunderstood the attendance policy and was terminated.

They told me that I could reapply 6 months later, which I did, and although my background has not changed since the last time they hired me, this time they're stating that my background is the reason why they are not hiring. I've gotten a letter of adverse action against me from them with a copy of my background report which doesn't do me any good because I already know my background and they knew it also when they hired me before.

My question is do I have any legal recourse in this matter? It seems to me like I'm being discriminated against but it doesn't fall under the EEOC guidelines. I think it's probably got something to do with the fact that I filed a workman's comp claim against them when I was working with them, and at the time I was occasional so I didn't have anybody telling me when to come to work. I had my own schedule and they didn't like that because they wanted me to come in more than I normally did. However, they were the ones that offered me the ability to do the schedule that way.

It's good pay and I need the job, and I would like to go back to work there, but I don't feel like they're being fair telling me that I'm not being hired because of my background. I think that that's a lie. Can I do anything?

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  • Punctuation and paragraph breaks will increase the odds that people will read this and respond to it; it's nearly unreadable as submitted. But honestly there's nothing you can do. If they don't want to hire you, it doesn't matter why unless they are violating a law. Let this go and apply (I'm starting to hate this keyboard) elsewhere.
    – keshlam
    Commented May 16 at 14:19
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    “My question is do I have any legal recourse in this matter?” - Why do you want to work for this company so badly? They have fired you once, and passed on hiring you again, it doesn’t seem like it’s a good fit.
    – Donald
    Commented May 16 at 15:45
  • Legal question require a location tag. Labor laws vary greatly around the world and sometimes even from state to state (if your country has states or provinces)
    – Hilmar
    Commented May 16 at 15:59

3 Answers 3

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It's good pay and I need the job, and I would like to go back to work there, but I don't feel like they're being fair telling me that I'm not being hired because of my background. I think that that's a lie. Can I do anything?

Probably not. They are not doing anything wrong. They did not promise to hire you. They said you can apply again. You did. They rejected your application. That is their right.

They are discriminating. Everybody is. Discrimination only means they don't take everyone, they treat people differently based on something. I am quite happy that my doctors office discriminates against people with no medical degree. I am sure that you are happy that your favorite restaurant discriminates against clumsy people that cannot cook. Much of our daily discrimination is perfectly legal.

The question is, is this unlawful discrimination?

Where I live, it is illegal to discriminate base on "race, ethnicity, sex, religion or beliefs, disability, age or sexual identity". Details may differ in your country.

Even you are not suspecting them of doing that. You are suspecting them of not hiring you because of their past experiences with you. But unless you had some legally binding agreement to the contrary, that is absolutely within their rights.

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Firstly: they can hire/not hire whoever they choose. You have zero proof of there being any discrimination so no you have no recourse.

Now to address your suspicions: there are multiple things that are or might be different from the last time you were hired. The biggest is that your background isn't the same - this time around, it includes being fired from a company because you broke policy. Maybe it's a different hiring manager who has different priorities. Maybe they've updated the job description or decided to look for different experiences/skills in their hires.

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All that you were told after being terminated was that you could apply later, perhaps as a courtesy and path to the least amount of conflict/friction. That wasn't any guarantee that you'd be hired if you applied again, and your original text implies that they did indeed accept your application.

Now, I may be reading into it, but when they passed on hiring you again, citing your "background", you might have assumed incorrectly that they were referring to stuff on some official background check. But the truth is that they could also be referring to any records they'd maintained of your prior employment, which could also be referred to as your "background". The HR people have no duty to give you a detailed explanation on which "background" they meant. There may be something in their files that says "do not rehire", and they're not going to risk creating any conflict (which eats up a lot of time) to tell you if there is or not.

Move on, friend. The pay might be good, but it seems (respectfully) that you need A job, and not particularly THIS job.

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