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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 44955
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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My employee is taking us to tribunal for constructive dismissal.

Customer Question

My employee is taking us to tribunal for constructive dismissal. She accessed my private email account through gmail and printed off private emails to my partner that were sent over a weekend. We wanted to make her role redundant but also offered her another role in the company. She called in sick but went into the office and printed these emails and has handed them over to her solicitor. The emails prove we were not happy with her performance, hence her claim. I want to understand if I am able to take her to civil court for this invasion of privacy?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is Ben and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.

JACUSTOMER-xgnjxvt1- :

Thank you, am I able to follow up this invasion of privacy in civil court?

Ben Jones :

How did she access your private emails, did she have the password or was the account just left open?

JACUSTOMER-xgnjxvt1- :

She had password as part of her role was as my personal assistant, (she says it was left open which is not possible as I was not in the office for a few days and gmail signs out)

Ben Jones :

ok let me get my response ready please

Ben Jones :

There is no such claim as 'invasion of privacy' in the UK I'm afraid. As such you have to consider whether there are other options in law that would allow you to take this to court. However, in the circumstances that is going to be unlikely. The person did not 'hack' into the emails - they had a password to access them so there is no illegal access to a computer in this case because they had not forced their way in by illegal means.

They may be in breach of data protection regulations but taking action for this is not easy and you can only claim if you have suffered actual losses as a result. Paying out for a successful constructive dismissal claim is not going to count as a loss because you would have been found guilty of the allegations in a court of law and as such would be liable for these anyway.

What you could do is ask the tribunal not to accept these as evidence in the constructive dismissal case due to the way they were obtained. However, it is for the tribunal to decide that and all you can do is ask them to consider this request,. Although the final decision would rest with them.

Ben Jones :

Please let me know if this has answered your query or if you need me to clarify anything else for you in relation to this?

Ben Jones :

I hope this has answered your query. Please take a second to leave a positive rating, or if you are unhappy for some reason with the advice - please get back to me and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you very much

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