When a new client retains us to handle their case, one of the first things the attorneys at Spitz, The Employee’s Law Firmadvise the client is not to post about his or her case on social media websites. A recent case provides a good reminder of precisely why we provide such advice.
In EEOC v. The Original Honeybaked Ham Co., a hostile work environment and sexual harassment case brought by the EEOC on behalf of 20 female employees, the federal court compelled the plaintiffs to produce their social media profiles. The court ordered the production the employees’ social media accounts to be turned over so that the employer could present an argument regarding the alleged damages in the case. One of the plaintiffs had posted statements on the social media website Facebook about her financial expectations in the lawsuit, her post-termination employment, and her present financial condition. Some of the other plaintiffs commented on the first plaintiff’s statements. The employer then used the plaintiff’s statements on Facebook to make the argument that the plaintiff had not been harmed to the extent that she is claiming, if at all.
The bottom line is that social media websites are replete with potential relevant information in a lawsuit. Clients who do not want their personal thoughts dissected and picked apart in a court of law are best advised to refrain from posting statements on the their social media websites about their cases. Perhaps more importantly, clients should refrain from posting if they do not wish to potentially jeopardize the value of their cases.
AtSpitz, The Employee’s Law Firm, our attorneys believe that protecting a client’s privacy and confidentiality is so important that we include a paragraph in our standard contract to that end. The paragraph discusses the American Bar Association’s Formal Opinion 11-459, which highlights the confidentiality concerns that arise when clients send communications via email, text and other electronic means because of the significant risk that a third party may gain access to them.
If you even think that your employment rights have been violated or that you might need an employment lawyer, then call the right attorney to schedule a free and confidential consultation at 866-797-6040. Spitz, The Employee’s Law Firm is dedicated to protecting employees’ rights and solving employment disputes.
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