Restatement second of torts 652b liability only

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Unformatted text preview: or in his memorandum of law in opposition to defendant's motion to dismiss, the allegations in the Complaint might suggest that plaintiff is alleging an exception to the at-will employment rule based on estoppel, i.e. that defendant repeatedly assured plaintiff and others that it would not intercept e-mail communications and reprimand or terminate based on the contents thereof and plaintiff relied on these assurances to his detriment when he made the "inappropriate and unprofessional" e-mail communications in October 1994. The law of Pennsylvania is clear, however, that an employer may not be estopped from firing an employee based upon a promise, even when reliance is demonstrated. Paul v. Lankenau Hospital, 524 Pa. 90, 569 A.2d 346 (1990). The Court of Appeals in Borse, observed that one of the torts which Pennsylvania recognizes as encompassing an action for invasion of privacy is the tort of "intrusion upon seclusion." As noted by the Court of Appeals, the Restatement (Second) of Torts defines the tort as follows: One who intentionally intrudes, physically or otherwise, upon the solitude or seclusion of another or his private affairs or concerns, is subject to liability to the other for invasion of his privacy, if the intrusion would be highly offensive to a reasonable person. Restatement (Second) of Torts § 652B. Liability only attaches when the "intrusion is substantial and would be highly offensive to the 'ordinary reasonable person.' " Borse, 963 F.2d at 621 (citation omitted). Although the Court of Appeals in Borse observed that "[t]he Pennsylvania courts have not had occasion to consider whether a discharge related to an employer's tortious invasion of an employee's privacy violates public policy", the Court of Appeals predicted that in any claim where the employee claimed that his discharge related to an invasion of his privacy "the Pennsylvania Supreme Court would examine the facts and circumstances surrounding the alleged invasion of privacy. If the court determined that the discharge was related to a substantial and highly offensive invasion of the employee's privacy, [the Court of Appeals] believe that it would conclude that the discharge violated public policy." Id. at 622. In determining whether an alleg...
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