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Rights to email account? Reputation of unpaid nonprofit employee Rhode Island

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  • Rights to email account? Reputation of unpaid nonprofit employee Rhode Island

    It's bad enough my pay was never given, but it's more about preserving my reputation at this point.

    I helped start a nonprofit last year, "donating" my time until funding could come in after our first year. My pay was set at an agreed rate. I put in approximately 1800 hours of labor on this program.

    Once funding started coming in I was forced out and told to "step away" or they would delete my email account and I did not have a choice in the matter. I sat waiting for two weeks before it was clear that I was not invited to come back.

    They made it clear that if I let word get out about it or anyone asked, they'd say I left voluntarily.

    They do not want anyone to know I am not with them any more and have circumvented my attempts to let business contacts know my role with the nonprofit has ended.

    Ironically, my email account is still operational, I just do not have access to it any longer. That means that anyone trying to email me thinks I am ignoring them OR my former boss is replying to the emails as if I were still there. Before I lost access to my email account, I had an auto reply set up stating I was unavailable (to comply with their demand to step away) and to contact the main office email for assistance. That auto reply has been removed. Anyone emailing me has no idea that I am not the one reading those emails.

    No one will know I am not there, and if I do find a way to share that I am not there, the nonprofit founder will state I left on my own free will.

    Is there any recourse to get my email account disabled entirely so they cannot abuse my identity and reputation even more? It is through the GoDaddy servers.

    People are donating to the program because they think I am still there.

    The nonprofit is based out of Rhode Island but I am in another state. EVERYTHING I did was done electronically.

  • #2
    Tell them

    You should tell people that you are no longer with the company, you don't have to say why, but don't let them profit off your associates/friends/etc. As for the email account, request a new password or call the email company (yahoo,aol,etc) tell them the issue etc.

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    • #3
      Past that, file a wage claim for unpaid wages. There is actual hard law with not paying people. This other stuff is legally uncertain.
      "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
      Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

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      • #4
        Originally posted by WhoRUFoolin View Post
        You should tell people that you are no longer with the company, you don't have to say why, but don't let them profit off your associates/friends/etc. As for the email account, request a new password or call the email company (yahoo,aol,etc) tell them the issue etc.
        I tried to announce this change of leadership via their FB page, and even worded it very carefully so it didn't look damaging to either party. Both my attempts were deleted. I tried via my own FB page, but that is a small sampling of friends or family that don't have much to do with the internal operations of the program. In other words, I cannot reach anyone that has a business need to know that I am not there any more.

        The only other option I can think of is to use my personal email address and go through my archived folders to find every email individually to let them know.

        If they just had an auto reply set up to give the courtesy to everyone, it would be different. They don't WANT people to know that I am not there.

        I do not have the password to get through tech support via GoDaddy, so even if I did convince them to help me...it would be temporary. She'd just set up the "catch-all" feature, which means nothing would ever bounce to indicate my email account was deleted.

        I get that employers can keep an email account open for business purposes, but in this case they are not making anyone aware that I am not the one receiving those emails. My fear is they are posing as me, or just letting emails get ignored and pissing my connections off on purpose.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by DAW View Post
          Past that, file a wage claim for unpaid wages. There is actual hard law with not paying people. This other stuff is legally uncertain.
          Even if the agreement was informal? I am very tempted, considering how this is all playing out. Common decency is not in their vocabulary.

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          • #6
            Yes, go ahead & file the wage claim.
            Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

            Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Betty3 View Post
              Yes, go ahead & file the wage claim.
              Thank you everyone for your kind and supportive replies.

              One last question if I may...since it is a nonprofit .org, won't they have more grounds to say that I was just a volunteer and not an employee? She did send me a reimbursement check a long time ago for expenses "plus a little extra to go toward my salary", so maybe that would count towards establishing that I was an employee?

              I bet she'll be happy to fix that email problem if the wage claim comes in. LOL

              People can really suck sometimes. Thanks for being the outreach of hope that I needed today.

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              • #8
                If you file the wage claim, the employer will have to prove that you did not
                work the hours/are not due the wages. It never hurts to file the wage claim.

                Good luck.
                Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

                Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

                Comment

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