U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Employer Searches and Underscores Importance of Electronic Communications Policies


Technology, the final frontier. These are the voyages of the U.S. Supreme Court. Its current mission: to explore strange new electronic communication devices; to boldly go where no court has gone before.

In its pioneer voyage into the perilous realm where workplace monitoring of a new technological device meets an employee’s reasonable expectation of privacy, the United States Supreme Court issued a unanimous decision that provides guidance on steps employers can take to reduce an employee’s privacy expectations and emphasizes the importance of having a clear, well-defined privacy policy. The Supreme Court decided City of Ontario v. Quon on June 17, 2010, holding that the City of Ontario did not violate an employee’s Fourth Amendment privacy rights when it reviewed personal text messages that the employee sent and received on his employer-owned and issued pager.1

1 City of Ontario v. Quon, 560 U.S. __ (2010).

To read the full alert, click on the PDF linked below.

The Labor and Employment Practice Group of Haynes and Boone, LLP has significant experience in drafting employment policies on electronic communications and assisting employers to address employee privacy concerns.

For more information, please contact the Haynes and Boone attorney with whom you work or any of the following attorneys in the firm’s Labor and Employment Practice Group:

Melissa M. Goodman


Matthew T. Deffebach

 Meghaan McElroy

Felicity A. Fowler

Dean J. Schaner

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