Who owns documents on a personal computer – the college or the teacher?

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Who owns documents on a personal computer – the college or the teacher?

I have used my personal computer for 4.5 years at the institution where I have worked. My contract was not renewed. Who owns the documents? There was no contract signed concerning this issue nor is it in the policy manual.

Asked on May 16, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, Tennessee

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Anything you did for work or the request of your supervisor(s), or using *any* resources of your employer (e.g. any online research tools or access they provided) belongs to  them. Your purely personal files (e.g. resume, work for other employees or on a freelance basis, not done during your college work hours or using college resources, personal correspondence and photos and music, etc.) is yours. Basically, if in any way for work or using resources supplied by work for your work (not personal) use is theirs.


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