RyAnn McKay Hooper, Associate in the Employment, Labor & Workforce Management practice, in the firm’s New York office, was quoted in SHRM, in “What to Include in Policies Regarding Damage to Equipment,” by Allen Smith.
Following is an excerpt:
When employees damage their employer’s property—whether it’s a laptop used while working from home during the pandemic or machinery in the employer’s facility—how should the company respond? The answer depends partly on the company’s policies about its property, as well as whether exempt or nonexempt employees damaged the property and whether the damage was caused by negligence or willfulness.
As for former employees’ damage to equipment or failure to return company property, employers will have to weigh the costs of litigation versus the likelihood of recouping expenses. …
RyAnn McKay Hooper, an attorney with Epstein Becker Green in New York City, cautioned, “If the employer files a police report accusing an employee of willful property destruction, which could be criminal conduct, and it turns out that the employer was incorrect, the employer could be liable for defamation.”