Say Nothing Means Say Nothing: The Facebook Post that Cost $80,000


When Gulliver Schools, Inc. (“Gulliver”) did not renew Mr. Snay’s contract as the school’s headmaster, Mr. Snay filed a complaint alleging age discrimination and retaliation.  In full and final settlement of Mr. Snay’s claims, the parties entered into a general release and settlement agreement.

Gulliver was to pay Mr. Snay $10,000 in back pay and $80,000 pursuant to a 1099.  A material provision of the settlement agreement was the detailed confidentiality provision.  The provision required Mr. Snay and his wife to keep strictly confidential the terms of the agreement or a portion of the settlement proceeds (the $80,000) would be returned.  The agreement specifically said that Mr. Snay "shall not either directly or indirectly, disclose, discuss or communicate to any entity or person, except his attorneys or other professional advisors or spouse any information whatsoever regarding the existence or terms of this agreement…” and “[a] breach… will result in disgorgement of the plaintiff’s portion of the settlement payments."

Only four days after the agreement was signed, Gulliver notified Mr. Snay that he had breach the agreement based on a Facebook posting of Mr. Snay’s college-age daughter. The posting said "Mama and papa Snay won the case against Gulliver. Gulliver is now officially paying for my vacation to Europe this summer. SUCK IT.”  The Facebook post was disseminated to approximately 1200 of the daughter’s Facebook friends (many of them were either current or past Gulliver students).

The court found that Mr. Snay speaking to his daughter regarding the matter being settled was a violation of his breach of duty of confidentiality.  The court found that his daughter then "did precisely what the confidentiality agreement was designed to prevent, advertising to the Gulliver community that Snay had been successful in his age discrimination and retaliation case against the school."  Based on the court finding that this was a breach of confidentiality provision, the court did not enforce the agreement.  Gulliver did not have to pay Mr. Snay the $80,000!

The moral of the story: Do not violate a confidentiality agreement provision, especially by a post on social media, which, in this case, is essentially the equivalent of holding a press conference with 1200 interested individuals.


The postings on this blog were created for general informational purposes only and do not constitute legal advice or a solicitation to provide legal services.  Although we attempt to ensure that the postings are complete, accurate, and current as of the time of publication, we assume no responsibility for their completeness, accuracy, or timeliness.  The information in this blog is not intended to create, and receipt of it does not constitute, a lawyer-client relationship.  Readers should not act upon this information without seeking professional legal counsel.

This blog may contain links to independent third party websites and services, including social media. We provide these links for your convenience, and you access them at your own risk.  We have no control over and do not monitor the content or policies (including privacy policies) of these third-party websites and have no responsibility for, and no liability with respect to, their content, accuracy, or reliability.  Unless expressly stated, we do not endorse any of the linked websites or any product, service, or publication referenced herein or therein.  We will remove a link to any site from this blog upon request of the linked entity.

We grant permission to readers to link to this blog so long as this blog is not misrepresented. This site is not sponsored or associated with any other site unless so identified.

If you wish for Wilentz, Goldman & Spitzer, P.A., to consider representing you, please obtain contact information from the Contact Us area of this blog or go to the firm’s website at  One of our lawyers will be happy to discuss the possibility of representation with you. However, the authors of Wilentz blogs are licensed only in New Jersey and/or New York and do not wish to represent anyone who viewed this site in a state where the site fails to comply with all laws and ethical rules of that state.

Thank you for your interest in Wilentz, Goldman & Spitzer P.A.’s legal blogs. You will receive an email sent to the address entered in order to confirm your subscription. Please watch for it and click the link to confirm your subscription.