Did my boss break any laws regarding private information in the workplace?

UPDATED: Mar 27, 2011

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Did my boss break any laws regarding private information in the workplace?

My boss told one of my co-workers this morning that I was going to be suspended without pay. I was not around during this time, nor had I received any information about a suspension from work. I was informed by my co-worker that I was getting suspended after I had arrived to work my schedule at noon today. I was wondering if this is legal to tell another associate that I was getting suspended without pay before I had even received such information?

Asked on March 27, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Tennessee


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Employee workplace privacy rights are virtually non-existent (except possibly in the public sector and depending on the circumstances).  Virtually no state has employee workplace privacy rights laws.   The fact is that most employment arrangements are "at will".  This means an employer can hire or fire someone for any reason (even a bad one) or no reason whatsoever, as well has increase/decrease salary/hours, promote/demote, and generally impose requirements as they deem fit.  In turn, an employee can work for an employer or not, their choice.  Unless there is a stated company policy covering this type of situation, or there is a union/employment agreement to the contrary, or there is some type of discrimination involved, your employer's behavior was perfectly permissible and did not violate any law (although it was incredibly unprofessional).

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