Loose Facebook Lips Can Sink Dad's Back Pay

Loose Facebook Lips Can Sink Dad's Back Pay

By now we all know that Facebook posts can get you into trouble. But in a post on The Employer Handbook, attorney Eric B. Meyer discusses an instance in which a father lost big because of something his daughter posted.

As Meyer explains, the man was a former headmaster at a school in Florida who sued for age discrimination and retaliation when his employment contract wasn’t renewed. The settlement landed him $10,000 in back pay, $80,000 as a “1099” and $60,000 for his attorneys.

But, Meyer says, the settlement included a provision that divulging even the existence of the agreement would cost the man his $80,000 payment. And four days after it was signed and prior to receiving the money, the man was informed that he’d breached the contract because his college-age daughter revealed it on Facebook.

Meyer says that the Facebook comment went out to approximately 1,200 of the daughter’s Facebook friends, many either current or past students at the school. The man sued to enforce the agreement and collect his $80,000 but lost because the court determined that his daughter’s posting violated the mandated confidentiality.

While surprised by the large penalty, Meyer says that’s why his confidentiality agreements include language “warning that keeping quiet about the agreement means shutting your yap and your social media fingers.”