Most employers know they aren’t allowed to destroy evidence (including e-mail, other electronic communications and records) when a lawsuit is imminent. But what about when an employee who is about to sue the employer destroys evidence?
Employers can use that destruction to their advantage in a lawsuit. A court has ruled that a jury can properly conclude that the information contained in the destroyed records would have supported the employer’s case.
Recent case: Before several employees left a consulting firm to start a competing company, they destroyed e-mail and other internal records. The firm sued.
The court concluded that the employer could argue to the jury that the obliterated information supported the employer’s case. After all, why else would the records have been destroyed? (Rimkus Consulting v. Cammarata, et al., No. 07-0405, SD TX, 2010)
- Don't tolerate threats, even if they occur during conversation about possible discrimination
- Root out violent applicants by asking right questions
- Returning from FMLA leave may require ADA accommodation
- Don't overreact to co-worker's isolated racial slur, but don't ignore it either
- Factor aging employees into work safety equation