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Question

 

Hello Gramps,

I need some guidance on theft of a company.  I have someone that worked for me that is Mormon (I am not) that created her own business doing exactly what my company does.  When she quit she took company information and files with her (without my knowledge or consent.)  Since then she has taken all my clients.  I could take her to court but feel maybe notifying the church would do more.  What are your thoughts?  I can explain in more detail if needed.  I found more too.

David

 

Answer

 

Dear David,

I’m sorry that your employee was dishonest in her dealings with you. I hope you have better experiences with Mormons in the future. The Church of Jesus Christ to which she belongs has published a document Of Governments and Laws in General, which has since been incorporated in our scriptures. It contains the following statement about the level of punishment that a church, any church, ought to mete out to wayward members:

“We believe that all religious societies have a right to deal with their members for disorderly conduct, accordingto the rules and regulations of such societies; provided that such dealings be for fellowship and good standing; but we do not believe that any religious society has authority to try men on the right of property or life, to take from them this world’s goods, or to put them in jeopardy of either life or limb, or to inflict any physical punishment upon them. They can only excommunicate them from their society, and withdraw from them their fellowship.” (D&C 134:10)

The Church will not seize her property and profits, nor will it remove clients from her. The most The Church can do is excommunicate your former employee although, as a general rule, she will still be welcome to attend meeting so long as she is not disruptive. Even if The Church does take this extreme action, it will not bring your old clients back to you, nor make up for lost profits. When brothers and sisters in Christ have a grievance with each other, they are encouraged to work it out in person. In the words of Jesus,

“if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.” (Matthew 18:15).

If you haven’t done so, I encourage you to reach out to your former employee to see if the two of you can come to an agreement on how to right this wrong. If not, then seek redress for your wrongs through the court system. Indeed, the same document quoted earlier supports the legal system as the proper mechanism to set such things right:

“We believe that men should appeal to the civil law for redress of all wrongs and grievances, where personal abuse is inflicted or the right of property or character infringed, where such laws exist as will protect the same” (D&C 134:10).

The courts to have power to offset your losses financially punish wayward employees, Mormon or not.

 

Gramps

 

 

 

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