I was fired/let go from my unpaid internship after someone in the organization Googled my name and saw I had been arrested recently. I have not been convicted of any crime. Can they even do this?
Under the New York Human Rights Law there are protections for those who have been arrested but not convicted of a crime. There are also provisions prohibiting discrimination against those convicted of a crime unless the allegations against you in the underlying crime are relevant to your position. In addition, there is substantial recent debate on whether unpaid interns are “employees” and there could be a violation of the state’s minimum wage or overtime laws. Since these cases are usually fact specific, it is best that you seek advice from an New York employment attorney.
This legal question was provided by Avvo and answered by Kim Patricia Berg. an experienced New York Employment Attorney.