What Did Steve Jobs Know, and When Did He Know It?

Dave Hoffman

Dave Hoffman is the Murray Shusterman Professor of Transactional and Business Law at Temple Law School. He specializes in law and psychology, contracts, and quantitative analysis of civil procedure. He currently teaches contracts, civil procedure, corporations, and law and economics.

You may also like...

1 Response

  1. A.W. says:

    It may take a statute to do this, but I think policy-wise, your right to medical privacy should trump all.

    And I am not sure you need a law. If the company knows he is ill, the law is clear: the company cannot disclose it. that is HIPAA and its myriad regulations. So how can you say that the company may not disclose it, but Steve Jobs must?

    Indeed, how far does it go? If one of their best employees in the marketing Dept is sick, and probably going to have to quit, does he have to disclose? How about a top salesperson in one of their stores? Theoretially all of those people affect the bottom line, so I guess no one has the right to medical privacy.

    What if Jobs was in fact secretly handicapped, a la FDR? Should we say he has to reveal a thing that federal law says he has a right not to be discriminated based on?

    And the whole concept is violative of the entire idea of a corporation: that it has a separate existance from even its president and founder. Apple will be there even if Jobs isn’t.

    And what is the harm to investors? All we need to do is make it clear that there is no guarantee that the current employess will remain employees and that will be priced into any transaction.