Can I sue my former employer for breach of confidentiality?

Asked over 1 year ago - Fort Pierce, FL

I gave confidential information to my employer about a peer in management who was using drugs and possibly dealing them where we worked. I was told I would stay anonymous. Several months later the peer contacted me accusing me of being a snitch and getting him fired. When I asked how he found out he admitted that upper management told him I was the one that gave the information. Now he is all over facebook telling everybody that I am a snitch and telling them what happened. Is there anything I can do?

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Benjamin Harris Yormak


    Contributor Level 10


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I agree with Mr. Tan. Unless you had a specific agreement with your employer (preferably in writing) that the employer agreed to keep all such information you disclose confidential, you likely do not have a case against your employer. As Mr. Tan said, truth is an absolute defense to libel/slander, so unless your employer disclosed FALSE information, you would probably not have a remedy.

    This is general information only and does not constitute legal advice, nor does this communication in any way... more
  2. Robert Edward Fenster

    Contributor Level 14


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Yes, if there was a breach of employment contract regarding confidentiality or complaints. However, if you still have that job and want to keep it, let the matter go and don't respond- other than in as few words as possible such as: "It bothers me to even have to consider protecting my reputation and name, but X is blaming the wrongfully blaming me for this."

    Next time something like this happens, Deny, Deny, Deny and then if you have to, blame it on the accuser. An example is:

    I did not.
    Whoever told you is wrong.
    I would never do such a thing.

    This is your problem, which you caused yourself- I actually did you a favor...

  3. Herbert J Tan

    Contributor Level 17


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Truth is a defense to any claim of slander or defamation. I do not see a viable claim related to their actions assuming that no written or even quasi agreement existed between you and the employer.

    Herbert Tan, Esq.

    The National Newark Building
    744 Broad Street, 16th Fl.
    Newark, New Jersey 07102
    (973) 735-2681 (W)
    (973) 735-2682 (F)

    Manhattan Office
    305 Broadway, 14th Floor
    New York, New York 10007
    (888) TAN-LAWS

    Member of National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA)

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