Our client is asking for employee personal information – are we required to provide it?

We service a client by cleaning their facilities. The client asked us to remove our employee due to theft and wants to press charges. They are asking for the employee’s personal information. Are we obligated to provide that information?

Rita Risser Chai Responds:

Presumably the company is asking for information that will enable them to help the police locate the employee. You cannot provide the Social Security Number (without a court order) as that is protected information. At least one state, Connecticut, has a law that says that personnel file info can be given out only with the employee’s permission, a request from law enforcement for the home address and dates of work, or a subpoena or court order. So, perhaps telling the client to ask the police to make the request might be a good idea to protect yourself.

Posted 04-11-2017

Information here is correct at the time it is posted. Case decisions cited here may be reversed. Please do not rely on this information without consulting an attorney first.


About the Author:

Rita M. Risser Chai is the founder of Fair Measures. An attorney in California for 20 years and now an attorney in Hawaii, she authored the Prentice Hall book, Stay Out of Court! The Manager’s Guide to Preventing Employee Lawsuits. She developed most of the curriculum used by Fair Measures, created the firm’s first website praised in HR Magazine, and wrote numerous articles on employment law including one on best practice harassment prevention training published in the magazine of the American Society for Training and Development (now ATD). She taught Law and Human Resources at the University of California, Santa Cruz, for eight years, and has presented four times at the annual conventions of the Hawaii Society of Human Resource Management.