I was laid off and told I would be contacted the next day to come clean out my desk, my employer never notified me and went thru my personal belongings, don’t know yet what they’ve done with them. Is that legal?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

I was laid off and told I would be contacted the next day to come clean out my desk, my employer never notified me and went thru my personal belongings, don’t know yet what they’ve done with them. Is that legal?

My position was done away with and my employer told me that they would call me
the next day to come clean out my desk. I never received a call from them, and
found out that they have gone thru my desk and personal belongings and I have no
clue what they have done with them. Isn’t that an invasion of privacy?

Asked on January 12, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Kentucky

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

"Privacy" is not the issue--to oversimplify and overgeneralize (though it's basically true), there is no right to "privacy" at work: it's the employer's space, their office furniture, etc. and they can go through their space and their furniture as they like. 
However, that does not give them the right to withhold or dispose of your belongings. If they do not return what belongs to you, you could due them (e.g. in small claims court, acting as your own attorney or "pro se") for the value of what they have taken or thrown out.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption