Can you subpoena your own e-mails from the job you got fired from?

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Can you subpoena your own e-mails from the job you got fired from?

I have an appeal coming up and I have a boss he is saying he never approved something but I have it on an e-mail showing that he did. But I can’t get to it because I no longer work there.

Asked on November 4, 2010 under Employment Labor Law, Virginia

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Many states allow you to ask the Judicial Hearing officer for the ability to be able to subpoena records from your employer.  There is an understanding that inherent in an unemployment battle with your ex employer is their control over all the evidence you may need to present in your case.  Bosses are sneaky, though, eliminating e-mails.  You may have to go beyond an e-mail search and ask to have a tech person examine the server.  E-mails are stored somewhere on the server and are never really fully deleted.  I would call the unemployment office and ask what their procedure is long before the hearing date.  You may want to go down in person and be a presence there.  Phone call messages could be easily misplaced.  Good luck.


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