Employment Law

Exercising Discretion while Discussing your Employment Case

Never discuss your case through your employer’s communication machines

It’s common for many employees to unwittingly use their employer’s telephones, fax machines, and even e-mail accounts to discuss their cases. Your Evansville employment attorney will strongly advise against this behavior, since all incoming and outgoing telephone calls, faxes, emails are either stored by the communication devices or by the employers themselves.

You risk exposing privileged information when you discuss your case via phone or email. What’s more, the law is unclear on whether the attorney-client privilege remains in effect for information an employee discusses over their employer’s communication devices. You should refrain from using workplace communication devices to discuss your case, or even discussing your case at work at all.

Only communicate about your employment case with your attorney

Never discuss your case with anyone other than your Evansville employment attorney, because discussions with lay persons are not privileged and can only hurt your case. In fact, discussing the case with others is likely to prolong and increase the cost of the deposition process since the opposing attorney is entitled to examine such conversation in detail, which will call for more witnesses. Here are some more specific examples of how talking with non attorneys can hurt your case:

Example 1:

A plaintiff told his best friend the minimum amount of money that he would accept to settle his case. This amount was substantially lower than the plaintiff attorney’s conservative valuation of the case. At mediation, the defendant employer proposed the best and final offer which was the same amount as the plaintiff’s minimum amount. The plaintiff found out later that this best friend had talked to someone about their conversation and that the employer had obtained this information.

Example 2:

A plaintiff revealed to his girlfriend his attorney’s opinion on the strengths and weaknesses of the case, including useful potential witnesses whom the plaintiff did not wish the employer to discover. But when the girlfriend discovered that the plaintiff was cheating on her, she disclosed the information to the employer as revenge.

Example 3:

A plaintiff told her co-worker, who is also a close friend, about the lawsuit. The friend agreed to be a key witness for the plaintiff and then asked the plaintiff for more detailed information about the lawsuit. But a few days later, the friend received a salary increase at work and changed her mind about testifying.

The dedicated Evansville employment attorney from Siesky & Viehe Law Firm, PC will handle your case and work tirelessly to protect your job. Please contact their law offices today at (812) 402-7700 for a free initial consultation.

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