Can I sue for defamation if I have to repeat my former employer's false reasons for firing me?
In California, the "self-publication" theory protects those who have to repeat defamatory information.
My former California employer fired me. Although the company president claimed that I had failed to meet my deadlines, this is completely false. I never missed a deadline. I was fired because the President wanted to hire his wife for my position, which he did as soon as I was out the door.
Now I'm looking for a new job, and I keep getting asked why I left my last one. If I lie and say I quit or was laid off, they might call for a reference and find out the company's official reason for firing me. But who's going to hire me if I say I was fired for missing deadlines, which isn't even true? What can I do?