I took my company's laptop with permission from company stating I will return in 5 days. I was terminated forcibly and the lapto carries evidence of my harassment by my employer. The laptop doesnt allow data to be soft copied or transfered and there is .what happens if I don't return laptop to company.
The legal consequence of retaining the laptop will depend on the terms of employment signed by you. Most of the standard employment contracts provide that in case of termination of the contract all the items owned by the employer in the possession of the employee will revert back to the employer. In such a case you are bound to return the laptop to your employer and the employer has the right to file a suit against you to take back the laptop.
I guess you will filing a suit against your employer for wrongful termination very soon. In this scenario, you may have the option of filing for an interim order where you can request the Court to allow you to retain the laptop for the proceedings. You will have to justify to the Court that the case is prima facie in your favor and an irreparable damage will done if you have to return the laptop. You must contact a lawyer to facilitate the process while pursuing your case for wrongful termination. Meanwhile, do try to procure technical support to acquire the soft copy of the data on the laptop as it is always better to have absolute control over the most important evidence in your case.
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