WRONGFULLY TERMINATED

HI MEL,
I WANT TO KNOW IF I HAVE A CASE AGAINST MY FORMER EMPLOYER. ON DECEMBER 1. 2004. I WAS QUESTIONED MY EMPLOYERS ABOUT THE USAGE OF THE INTERNET. SHE ASKED IF I KNEW OF ANYONE WHO HAD USED THE COMPUTER AND HAD ACCESS THE INTERNET. I STATED NO. ON DECEMBER 3, 2004 I WAS CALLED INTO THE OFFICE AND TOLD THAT I WITHELD INFORMATION FROM HER. SHE STATED SHE WAS TERMINATING ME. SHE SAID I WITHELD INFORMATION FROM HER. SHE GAVE ME NO LETTER OF TERMINATION OR PAYCHECK. IT WAS LATER LEARNED THAT THE PERSON AT FAULT STILL REMAINS EMPLOYED AT THE JOB SITE, BUT NOW I'M OUT OF A JOB.
DO I HAVE A CASE?

1 answer  |  asked Jan 10, 2005 1:36 PM [EST]  |  applies to New York

Answers (1)

David M. Lira
Access E-mail and the Internet at Work

When you are home, using your own internet service provider and your own e-mail account, you have certain, though fairly limited, rights of privacy. So, for example, your employer is not allowed to access your private e-mail account.

Once you use the employer's computer (including a laptop that you might be using at home on off hours), or use the employer's internet service provider or e-mail system, all bets are off. The employer has every right to know what you are doing on its computers or computer systems.

A lot of employers have handbooks which tell employees that they should not be snooping on other employees by accessing the other employees' computer records. That only restricts what employees do to one another. It does not restrict the employer's ability to monitors usage of its computers and computer systems. In any case, at least in New York State, employer handbooks rarely give employees any enforceable rights, even when the handbooks say employees have certain rights.

posted by David M. Lira  |  Jan 11, 2005 09:09 AM [EST]

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