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I am a car hauler ( truck driver ), this past week 11 radios

were stolen out of brand...
I am a car hauler ( truck driver ), this past week 11 radios were stolen out of brand new cars and trucks out of the rail yard that I work out of in Ridgefield, NJ. Because, one of the said vehicles was on one of my loads and I happened to find the damage done I am being considered a suspect. I was told by my Terminal manager that my information had been given to Conrail management and possibly to Ridgefield police by him without my consent. I was also told that because this vehicle was on my load I may be bought in for fingerprints. My question is is this even legal? There are about 100 people that work out of this rail head at any given time... Does my employer have the right to forward my information without my consent?
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5/11/2013
Dwayne B.
Dwayne B., Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 34,054
Experience: Employment Law Expert
Verified

JD 1992 :

Hello and thank you for contacting Just Answer. I am an expert here and I look forward to assisting you today. If at any point any of my answers aren’t clear please don’t hesitate to ask for clarification.

JD 1992 :

It isn't illegal for an employer to provide information to someone else, that's an urban myth that likely arose from a federal law prohibiting the release of an employee's medical information, not general info.

JD 1992 :

If you are going to be questioned be sure and hire an attorney to accompany you.

JD 1992 :

Many innocent people don't believe it is necessary but many innocent people also end up with a conviction even though they are innocent.

Customer:

Thank you for the clarification... Does the Privacy Act apply in any way in this matter?

JD 1992 :

Which privacy act?

JD 1992 :

If you are talking about the Privacy Act of 1974 that only applies to governmental agencies and has an exception for law enforcement purposes.

Customer:

Employee Privacy Act

JD 1992 :

Are you asking about a specific state law?

Customer:

Federal or State on employers revealing information on employees?

JD 1992 :

Nothing in the federal law applies in a case like this.

JD 1992 :

What specific state are you asking about, NJ?

Customer:

New jersey What is the employer allow to reveal to any outside entity.

Customer:

Is there anything that protects me in this matter since i do not want my information out there for the public to view

JD 1992 :

To a law enforcement agency they are allowed to reveal anything although most employers require a warrant to do so. There are no restrictions on things like name, address, telephone number, etc.

Customer:

how about Driver licence and social security

Customer:

in a case when they have given this in formation is there a legal case against the employer/

JD 1992 :

There is an identify theft law in NJ but it doesn't really cover this. It requires them to keep SSNs and DLs completely private. It has a very narrow scope. You can read more about it in the articles at this search https://www.google.com/search?q=New+Jersey+Identity+Theft+Prevention+Act&rlz=1C1SKPC_enUS379US379&aq=f&oq=New+Jersey+Identity+Theft+Prevention+Act&aqs=chrome.0.57j64&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

Customer:

they gave this information to run my records with out probable cause,

JD 1992 :

The only way the employer would be liable is if you are somehow damaged in some way other than being the target of an investigation, such as if someone used your info to get credit, etc.

JD 1992 :

No, they had probable cause as that term is defined under the law. It is a very, very low standard.

Customer:

how about if i decline to corporate they are threating to bar me from the yard

JD 1992 :

NJ is an employment at will state so it is legal for them to do that unless you have some type of written contract or a union agreement that prevents it.

Customer:

thank you for your help ...

JD 1992 :

The best thing to do is get a lawyer ready to go with you if you are questioned and also have them draft a letter to the employer stating that it is a violation of the act I mentioned above to release the information.

JD 1992 :

There's nothing you can really do other than this until this matter is concluded.

JD 1992 :

Do you know what information exactly was released?

Customer:

Drivers licence, social security number

JD 1992 :

Your lawyer can also address the fact that this may have been a violation of the identity theft law and that you are going to hold them responsible for any damages that result from it.

JD 1992 :

It has to be worded carefully so they don't just fire you without there being a cause of action against them.

Customer:

thank you

Customer:

how about being profiled and singled out

JD 1992 :

Anything else I can answer for you? I know some of the answers weren't the ones you'd prefer but it would be unprofessional to not answer honestly.

JD 1992 :

Do you belong to a minority of any kind?

Customer:

yes

JD 1992 :

Do you have a reason to believe that they focused on you because of that as opposed to because one of the vehicles was on one of your loads?

JD 1992 :

Also, do you know if there are any other people being investigated there?

Customer:

as of right now there in one other minority

Customer:

i think it could be both

JD 1992 :

Your lawyer could certainly allege that as well. That would give you another potential cause of action if they fire you.

Customer:

It seems pretty obvious that the theft was an inside job by the rail people them selves...

Customer:

they are protected by a union contract I am not

Customer:

thank you

JD 1992 :

I don't know that that would make a difference in the actions.

Dwayne B.
Dwayne B., Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 34,054
Experience: Employment Law Expert
Verified
Dwayne B. and 87 other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
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Dwayne B.
Dwayne B.
Dwayne B., Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 34,054
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