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


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 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.

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 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.

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