With millions of active members, social media sites are a great way to connect with friends and family. People share anything and everything about their lives, families, successes and failures. Even when set to “private,” posts can end up being shared in ways you might not want or expect. In a court case, any comment can come back to haunt you and hurt your potential legal case.
Allen Thomas learned the danger of social media in his discrimination lawsuit against his former employer. Thomas sued his former employer, Fred Hill Jr., for termination in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Before the trial, Thomas wrote on Facebook about his former employer, the lawsuit, and his feelings on how much the suit was worth.
Hill was able to obtain a copy of the post, and he wanted to use it as part of his defense. He wanted to show that Thomas had a retaliatory motive and that he was able to work. Thomas had to fight to have the post blocked from the trial. The court ultimately agreed to exclude the post from trial, as it would potentially confuse or mislead the jury.
Though the court found that the relevancy of the post did not outweigh the potential prejudice in this case, you should still be careful when discussing your employer on social media. Even if you are not friends with your employer on social media, they may be able to obtain the posts during the discovery phase of a trial, as Thomas’ employer did in this case. The safest course of action is to avoid discussing your employer on social media, even if you are not currently considering litigation. You never know when your posts can come back to haunt you.
Employment Discrimination Lawyers in NJ Can Help You
If you believe you have been a victim of employment discrimination, you should contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible. The law firm of John J. Zidziunas & Associates has a team of employment discrimination lawyers in NJ that can confidentially review your case and help you avoid potential pitfalls. For further information, call 973-509-8500, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit http://employmentdiscrimination.com/.
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