Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Laptop Privacy an interesting Colorado case

On Monday, the Colorado Supreme Court issued a case which addressed the privacy of materials on a party's laptop. While not a workers comp case it does involve issues of how much must be disclosed to the other side. It seems as if the Supreme Court is trying to balance the interests of requiring disclosure of pertinent information with the right of privacy. Since almost every case involves required disclosures it is an interesting case to read. In workers comp for example the other side always seeks as much of your past medical records as they can get their hands on. Sometimes however the disclosure is simply not relevant to the claim. For example should a female claimant be required to disclose or sign a release to disclose her ob/gyn records when the injury is to a wrist or back? Any disclosure just allows the other side to have more information. In the latest case the defendant was driving and it was alleged he was looking at his laptop when the traffic accident happened and someone was injured. The trial court ordered inspection of the laptop but in doing so left the defendant without protection from other matters on his laptop. The Supreme Court decided that the lower court must take steps to protect the privacy of the laptop contents except to show if it was being used at the time of the accident. View the case here.

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