We would like to pay your attention, that the current Labour Code of Lithuania does not explicitly state that disclosure of confidential information is considered as a gross breach of work duties for which the employee could be dismissed immediately. According to the previous edit of the Labour Code, such the employee‘s actions were considered as a gross breach of work duties. However, the Case Law forms the opinion that the amendment of Labour Code does not mean itself that disclosure of confidential information to a competing company could not be considered as a gross breach of work duties. Whereas the Part 3 of Article 58 of Lithuanian Labor Code does not set a final list of gross breach of work duties, therefore the employer has a right to treat such a violation as a gross breach of work duties.
The Supreme Court of Lithuania (Case No. E3K-3-461-695 / 2018) stated that despite the fact that the employee had grossly violated his work duties, when disclosing confidential information to the employer's competitor, however, the termination of the employment contract was illegal. The particular circumstances were assessed in this case, i.e. the relationship between the employer and the company to which the employee disclosed information; whether the employer made efforts to protect the information; whether disclosure of information had caused damage; how other employees acted in relation to the same competitor, whether the employer tolerated it; in addition whether the employee had a possibility to explain his actions and etc. The employer can terminate the employment contract only after assessing of all these circumstances.
Therefore, when assessing the circumstances, the employer should take into account:
Considering mentioned above, we recommend to take preventive
measures for protecting confidential information, for example:
To sum up, the employer could terminate the employment contract immediately on the ground of gross breach of work duties only if:
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