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Is WhatsApp a valid test medium?

Today, WhatsApp has become one of the most common means of communication in our society worldwide. We use it for our personal, family and work relationships. Faced with this last situation, if we find ourselves immersed in a labor problem with our company such as, for example, a dismissal, we ask ourselves the question: to what extent is a WhatsApp conversation valid as a means of evidence in a judicial procedure?

In it labor law, we can find numerous situations in which the worker has received communications from his boss or colleagues, such as changes in working conditions, the worker's own dismissal and even a start of an employment relationship without a contract or discharge. in Social Security, or even conversations between employees that may lead to the violation of contractual good faith.

Evidence 

Given the different means of evidence that can be used in a labor procedure, we must take into account that All of them must have a practical use for what they are intended to demonstrate or prove., for this we must go to the Law regulating Social Jurisdiction (Law 36/2011 of October 10), which in its article 90.1 establishes as admissible the means of reproducing words, images and sounds or archiving and reproducing data.

It is important to note that in the second section of the same article cited above, all evidence whose origin or method of obtaining involves a violation or injury to fundamental rights or public freedoms will be inadmissible.

Next, we will give some guidelines on how to contribute a WhatsApp conversation, so that it is admitted as valid in a labor judicial procedure and has the evidentiary force that we intend.

 

How evidence of 'WhatsApp' conversations should be provided in the labor procedure

Computer Expertise

One of the ways that provides the most guarantees and security regarding the authenticity of the conversation provided as evidence is the computer expertise, through a specialized professional, which, it is true, will involve an added cost in the procedure, but which at the end of the procedure can be a condition for obtaining a favorable result.

Screenshots of the mobile phone with the messages

Another perfectly valid way but which is more questionable in terms of the authenticity of the conversation is the contribution of images of the messages through screen shots on the phone. This medium will always require additional proof to prove its authenticity, such as through a notarial act in which the same notary attests to the coincidence of the content of the messages with the screenshots.

Document with the transcription of the messages

It is also possible to contribute a document with the transcription of the messages, which, like the previous one, requires additional proof to verify its authenticity.

Currently, we have a multitude of sentences that take into account a conversation via WhatsApp as evidence. The first sentence dates back to April 25, issued by the Superior Court of Justice of Galicia. After this, our jurisdictional bodies have been evolving when issuing their resolutions regarding the validity of the evidence, highlighting, for example, sentences such as that of 22 de enero de 2016 del TSJ de La Rioja, y la del 22 de noviembre de 2017 del TSJ andaluz.

If you are immersed in a similar situation or know a family member, friend or acquaintance who is experiencing some work-related injury, here, at Abogados Lara we can help you. For more information contact us through the form or our phone number, 916426434, and our experts in labor law will assist you free of charge and inform you about your possibilities of starting the procedure.

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