In November of 2011, the Snay family won a hard fought legal battle against Gulliver Preparatory School in South Florida on the grounds of discrimination. They were awarded a whopping $90,000 in the settlement.
And then one careless Facebook post cost them all of it.
When Patrick Snay, who was 69 at the time, did not get his contract renewed by the private school in Miami, he filed an age discrimination suit against his employer. When the dust finally settled, Gulliver Prep agreed to give Mr. Snay an $80,000 settlement plus an additional $10,000 in back pay. (The school also paid $60,000 to the family’s attorneys.)
But before the ink could dry on the paperwork, the Snay’s teenage daughter broadcast the following message to her 1,200 “friends” on Facebook: “Mama and Papa Snay won the case against Gulliver. Gulliver is now officially paying for my vacation to Europe this summer. SUCK IT.”
Unfortunately for the Snays, her comment was even more costly than it was tacky.
That’s because the school had put a confidentiality agreement in place to protect details of the settlement; no one was allowed to publically discuss the decision. When the Facebook post – and comments – reached officials at Gulliver Prep, they immediately sent a letter to the Snay’s lawyers outlining the infraction and stating they would not pay a dime.
The legal fires were stoked again. The Snays filed a motion with the Circuit Court to enforce the settlement and won, but the school appealed. Finally, at Florida’s Third District Court of Appeal, it was determined that the teenage girl’s Facebook post was, in fact, a violation of the confidentiality agreement. The Snay’s received none of the settlement.
If only the young woman would have abided by the wisdom of Proverbs 29:20….
Do you see someone who speaks in haste? There is more hope for a fool than for them.
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(Resource cataloged by David R Smith)