I was recently fired from a job because I "lied to my employer and embezzled funds." I was informed that if I chose to file unemployment she would claim that I embezzled fund from the company.
This so-called "embezzling" occurred one morning when I went to my employer's home to pick up a steam cleaner so that I could clean the office carpets that morning. I was ten minutes late to my boss's home, it took me ten minutes to find and load the machine into my car, and ten more minutes to get to work. I was unable to steam clean the floor that morning due to other work. My boss asked if I was late, and I told her ten minutes. Does the time I was picking up and transporting the steam cleaner to work not count as time that should have been on the clock?
I was also asked to answer phones one afternoon a week outside of the office. I started out using my personal cell phone, then my employer purchased an office cell phone. She told me that since she was paying for the cell, she wouldn't be paying me to essentially be on call throughout the whole day. In her words, "she couldn't afford to pay for the phone and pay me to work." I did this for six months before I was fired.
On this last paycheck, my boss took two hours worth the pay off of the check she wrote me. She claims that I "wasn't working and she knows it." I do not stay at the office and mess around just to cushion my time sheet.
Also, while working there, I was not provided any breaks throughout the day. If I stepped away from the desk, I was practically berated for not doing my job. There were other instances where my boss's business partner would lightly punch my arm, slap the back of my head, or tell me to "get off my ass and do laundry." Is that okay?
Furthermore, my boss made me take two of her continuing education courses because she procrastinated and didn't want to spend the time completing them. There were also incidences of fraudulent insurance claims being filed of which I was made take part. I did not agree with these business practices, but I feared that I would be fired if I said anything or refused to do them. Now I am fired because my former employer thinks I am "lazy and a liar."
Can I file for unemployment? Would any embezzlement charges stick? Should I send this information to the appropriate state boards? What course of action do I need to be taking in this situation?