Long story short, graduated, worked as a developer for a family business (tech start up) after 5 years things went sour between my employer and I. Employer mixed family and office politics which ruined our relationship. In an effort to get rid of me, employer and line manager schemed and built a paper trail based on setting impossible deadlines. I was written up for underperforming, and pressured into resigning.
Since then, I have worked for many other people who are not related, as a freelancer developer and now as a project manager in my current role. My current role is my first perm role since leaving the family business. I have had no issues at all, if anything I am a valued member of the team. The company is also a tech start up that is doing much better than my family member.
I am planning on changing jobs by year end, I would have had 2 years racked under my belt in my current position which I'm aware is what employers want. I am concerned though that the 5 year job might bite me in the ass if any future potential employer asks for a reference given the length of time I spent there.
My family employer has already told me he would not give me a favourable reference, will disclose that I was written up and will talk about me in a negative light.
Have I got any reason to be concerned - or would the future employer not bother to ask for the 5 year reference since it was a while ago, but only interested in my recent perm role?