Category Archive: Data Protection

Browser history analysis without specific employee consent

An employee’s entitlement to privacy and data protection in the workplace is one of the most frequently discussed topics in employment law. Many employers allow, or at least tolerate, private internet use in the workplace to a reasonable extent. If the employer instead opts to prohibit all personal use of internet in the workplace, an …

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Employee data protection – an increasingly onerous task?

In Brussels, the EU Commission, the Council and the Parliament are currently negotiating the final version of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in what is known as the trilogue discussions. Whilst there are still considerable differences between the three drafts in play one thing is sure: together with the individual fines, reputational implications for …

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Corporate Email Correspondence As Admissible Evidence?

The legal boundaries regarding the screening of an employee’s corporate email account and questions concerning the admissibility of those emails as evidence in court (eg in a wrongful dismissal lawsuit) have not been finally resolved. No express evidence exclusion rule is laid down by law, either in the Civil Code or in the Labour Court …

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Fake camera in the workplace – No co – determination right for works council

The works council does not have a co-determination right where the employer installs a fake security camera on the premises. This question was subject to a decision issued by the higher labour court Mecklenburg-Vorpommern dated 12 November 2014, docket number 3 TaBV 5/14. The employer, a clinic, had installed a fake camera at the back …

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Protection of confidential business secrets – Sharing sensitive company data among works councils of group companies

Passing on business secrets by employees to third parties may be a criminal offence and therefore potentially justify an immediate dismissal for cause. In a recent ruling the regional labour court (Landesarbeitsgericht, LAG) Schleswig-Holstein decided that sharing sensitive company data among works councils of group companies may not always justify a dismissal (March 4th, 2015; docket …

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Use of a promotional film after the end of an employment

Can an employer publish a promotional film after an employee, who appears in the film, is no longer employed by the company? The Federal Labour Court (Bundesarbeitsgericht, BAG) decided upon this matter on February 19, 2015 (docket number: 8 AZR 1011/13). The defendant had commissioned the production of a promotional film about its company in …

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Say cheese at the car wash – taking photos of ill employees

Taking pictures in public of an employee who is supposedly sick violates the employee’s general right of personality (Allgemeines Persönlichkeitsrecht, APR). However this violation can be justified by the employer’s interests. In the case at hand (docket number: 10 SaGa 3/13), the plaintiff was absent on sick leave when his immediate supervisor coincidentally ran into …

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Covert investigations and the risk for employers

A termination was void where the evidence supporting the termination was collected from the employee’s locker without the employee being present. In the case at hand, the employer, who runs cash & carry markets, suspected that one of its employees might have stolen goods. The manager secretly opened the employee’s locker during working time. The …

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Details of how Mrs Merkel’s new administration wants to be “Shaping Germany’s Future”

Almost three months after the general election, the biggest political parties CDU/CSU and SPD have agreed to form a joint administration under the lead of Chancellor Angela Merkel.  In a 185-page coalition agreement named “Shaping Germany`s Future”  the parties have specified their plans and contemplated actions in respect of the forthcoming legislative period. In this post …

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