If you work in a professional office job but question the ethics of your employer, this situation could have legal implications. Following practices encouraged by your company or your superior but which run contrary to state or federal laws could put you into legal jeopardy.
A dubious employer could manifest through several subtle and not-so-subtle signs.
The lack of a moral vision
According to information from the Houston Chronicle, if you work for a company that lacks moral integrity, you could begin to emulate its practices. While many unethical practices do not reach illegality, others do. If you do not stand up to bad practices, often a hard thing to do, you could cross a line and violate a law. This could take the form of insider training, corrupt accounting practices or dishonest actions toward consumers.
A company that promotes competition and performance among workers at all costs could send a signal that ethical (and legal) boundaries do not matter. If you embrace this culture, you could take illegal actions that put you at risk. When it comes to an investigation, your company could say you acted on your own.
The corrosiveness of bad behavior
What might seem okay because others engage in certain behaviors could lead to negative consequences. For example, long lunches could lead to time card fraud or violation of certain labor practices. You might also turn a blind eye to egregious actions that could lead to charges of complicity should an investigation result.
A negative company culture could become more than just a nuisance. It could implicate you in legal actions at some future date.