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I have a few issues, I have a boss who is also the owner.

I know that legal advice cannot be offered here so please do not block my question as i will look into legal options later on down the road if necessary.

I am the Sr. Systems Engineer at my workplace and I am the only I.T. employee here and i support 40 users across 2 offices.

My boss outlined that every person she has ever hired (these people were all IT Consultancy's not W-2 Employees) in IT as rotten bad individuals, she does ALOT of bad mouthing about employees she does not like to current employees and regularly would discuss who she wants to fire or she thinks she should fire.

Many of these comments or discussions have occurred in front of me or she has tried to have them with me and stopped once she saw i wasn't really interested in discussing that with her.

My boss regularly pushes AGAINST my recommendations, we are a medically based clinic and must follow HIPPA laws, it's commonplace in the workplace to have some form of anti-virus, as the systems engineer I have made numerous requests to supply the business with certain things that are needed to ensure that we do not destroy data or lose sensitive data by not being smart and having these tools.

I have been here for 1 year and she has pushed against almost every single recommendation i give to her, I send emails daily that require her approval in order for me to continue my job and sometimes NEVER EVER receive a response at all.

Usually when i remind her about an email that i needed her to respond to she will ALMOST ALWAYS cut me off and say she never got it - in the beginning i believed her but then thought it was strange that no other users inside of the company have the issues that she says she has - she on a constant basis will report she has email troubles but wont do anything i ask her to do when offering support and when i physically test her email client with internal and external emails i find that everything works EVERY SINGLE TIME.

Which recently led me to look up times and dates of when i sent material to her and i have had to physically check to verify the email is currently in her inbox as she is about to lie to my face and tell me she never received it, one such example occurred a few days ago and when i gave her a date and time she was able to locate the email in front of me after i insisted it was in her inbox waiting to be read.

I spend most of my day answering support tickets for employees and the employees here are AWESOME, i love working here but i cannot be the productive individual i want to be if she refuses to answer email.

She has a boyfriend who is not an employee and has visited the office a few times, last time he came i was extremely busy that day, i was pulled into her office and scolded publicly (i say publicly because her door was open and i am sure others could hear) the following day because i was not pleasant or i did not approach her "partner" or "boyfriend" - i actually did not approach them at all - rather i focused on my work and got that done instead.

She scolded me for not being polite, not talking to him and she also stated that he told her that i appeared to have a bad attitude, NOW, this is where the plot thickens - I was never around her and her friend at all that day, i actually spent most of my day in the server room and at the remote office 17 miles away so i was a bit floored to hear her say what she said to me. She lied to my face yet again about something that literally never happened.

I am not sure what to do, i also work at the same workplace with my mother who is the operations manager and my boss has now turned on her - my grandmother passed away on feb 24th, we asked for 1 week of time for bereavement, we were told that she could offer us 2 days unpaid bereavement and she offered us the ability to take a leave. I returned to work after the week because i do not make very much money and cannot support my family on zero pay and my boss knows my living and financial situation.

I feel like there is something that can be done legally but i am at a point where she will not even allow me to use my available PTO for the days i was offer on bereavement.

I have bent over backwards for her, doing tasks and jobs that are outside my pay range/grade and i have even helped her do server forensic work that got her out a 15K + lawsuit she was being sued over from the previous IT consultancy.

I am still grieving for the woman that raised me my whole life and cannot even do that in peace watching this woman torment my mother or operations manager.

My boss believe she needs to build a case against everyone she fires which is not true since California is "AT-WILL" but i feel like I'm caught between leaving or resigning and just sticking it out because its been tough for me to find work at times.

Also what can i do to protect myself from slander or defamation if i resign and find out she is telling employees she fired me for insubordination or something else untrue? I have seen her do this before.

Also, when other IT people have left, i have seen her contact them repeatedly for passwords or other documents that exist on her server or email she chooses not to look for them but pester ex employees by calling or using her lawyer to threaten them, since i have seen that i am concerned about what i can do to protect myself before or if i leave this job? what would be common practice to make sure i document things to protect myself?

I should also add that since things have become difficult here i get so stressed out that i don't really have any alternative to relieve stress, i have no health insurance because its not affordable so i can't see a doctor and go on a medical leave for anything like that.

Please offer advice, i am sorry this is so long.

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    Don't use your real name as username when asking questions like this, your boss will maybe see it – kemis Mar 22 '17 at 1:18
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    I don't want to down vote your question. But It's waaay to long to read! – comxyz Mar 22 '17 at 2:47
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    If you know we don't accept legal questions here you'd presumably also know that we frown on long-winded rants with no clear identifiable question. Please edit your post for length and indicate what practical question you are actually asking. – Lilienthal Mar 22 '17 at 5:31
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    Change you user name and do not use a real pic ( if it is ) for a post like this! – Mister Positive Mar 22 '17 at 11:20
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    If you insist on thinking she is lying when she doesn't remember or can't find your email, you lack empathy to understand that other people don't think like you. She may be scatterbrained, overstressed, or just have things to worry about that you don't know. Stop trying to prove she got your email and focus on how you can be valuable to the company and how you can enjoy your job. If you can't, then as hard as it is you know what your next step is. – Kate Gregory Mar 22 '17 at 12:38
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Please offer advice, i am sorry this is so long.

You should find yourself a new job, then quit.

Also what can i do to protect myself from slander or defamation if i resign and find out she is telling employees she fired me for insubordination or something else untrue? I have seen her do this before.

You should talk to your lawyer. I suspect any decent attorney will advise you that her "telling employees that she fired you for insubordination or something else untrue" is not really actionable slander or defamation.

But if that's not the case, your lawyer will be able to tell you how to proceed.

Also, when other IT people have left, i have seen her contact them repeatedly for passwords or other documents that exist on her server or email she chooses not to look for them but pester ex employees by calling or using her lawyer to threaten them, since i have seen that i am concerned about what i can do to protect myself before or if i leave this job? what would be common practice to make sure i document things to protect myself?

Make sure you leave her a list of everything she might want - passwords, documents, etc.

Then, simply don't take calls from her or answer her emails.

Have her lawyer talk to your lawyer as needed.

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    +1 to this. Most lawyers don't appreciate being used as a weapon to intimidate people. – MarkTO Feb 15 at 19:27
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Also what can i do to protect myself from slander or defamation if i resign and find out she is telling employees she fired me for insubordination or something else untrue? I have seen her do this before.

Everybody who works with her knows what kind of person she is, I wouldn't worry that anyone will believe her. I understand the frustration, but jerks are going to be jerks and there's nothing you can do about that.

Also, when other IT people have left, i have seen her contact them repeatedly for passwords or other documents that exist on her server or email she chooses not to look for them but pester ex employees by calling or using her lawyer to threaten them

Block her phone number and email when you leave, and change all of your passwords and/or delete all accounts that you're able to. You can't do anything for her if you don't have access anymore, and you shouldn't have access if you don't work there anymore. If possible, arrange to have a coworker change all the passwords you had to new ones that you don't know.

Having her lawyer threaten former employees is purely ridiculous, they shouldn't still have access to any resources at their former job anyway. I think you can safely ignore anything that ridiculous.

And for the love of god find a new job. There's plenty of advice here and at askamanager.org about searching for a new job without letting your current job know you're looking. It's not a terribly unusual situation, reasonable employers are going to be willing to meet with you outside of your working hours or during your lunch break.

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    I think the biggest point here is to find a new job. For all that is holy, please leave. You are describing an absolute nightmare. – Travis Don Kindred Mar 22 '17 at 4:23
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    Indeed: leave - fast. This is the one lesson that I can strongly recommend for all with abusive bosses. – Captain Emacs Mar 22 '17 at 10:34

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