Can my job pull my phone records?

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Can my job pull my phone records?

My job wants to pull my phone records based on a rumor. I am a teacher and the rumor involves a student.

Asked on April 11, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Whose phone records are you asking about--your personal ones or the school's? (Note: I am assuming the employer in question is a school...if not, just substitute "employer" for "school" in the annswer below.)

If your personal ones, you have no obligation to provide them, unless--

1) You've given them permission--for example, you signed some employment agreement or contract stating that the school had the permission to obtain your phone records in certain circumstances; or

2) There is a court order or discovery demand in litigation.

Short of your agreement and/or some legal process, you don't have to provide your personal phone records--though note: if you are not protected by an employment contract or agreement of some kind (including a union contract), your employer may be able to terminate you (as an "employee at will") for not complying with their request.

However, if you they are interested in their own phone records--i.e. calls you've made from your school phone--they can look at that at will--it's their phone. And that would also include calls made from a cell phone (or blackberry) which they have provided you and for which they pay the bills--again, it's their phone.


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