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Facebook firing test case settled out of court

By Julianne Pepitone, staff reporter

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- A Connecticut ambulance service that fired an employee for posting negative Facebook comments about her boss has settled with its former worker, resolving a case that was poised to test new legal ground in labor law.

In October, National Labor Relations Board filed a complaint against American Medical Response of Connecticut over the firing of employee Dawnmarie Souza. A hearing in the case had been scheduled for this week.

The case received widespread attention for its groundbreaking attempt to set legal limits on employers' Internet policies.

The NLRB said AMR's Internet posting policy was "overly broad" and "contained unlawful provisions." The complaint called out a specific AMR policy that prohibited employees from making negative remarks on the Internet about the company or its employees.

The NLRB said that policy was in violation of the National Labor Relations Act, which gives employees the right to discuss "the terms and conditions of their employment with others."

As part of the settlement, AMR said it would revise its policies so they do not "improperly restrict" employees from discussing their employment outside of work.

The allegations involving Souza's firing were resolved in a separate agreement. Details were not disclosed.

AMR did not respond to requests for comment. To top of page

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