If someone had to be laid off, someone had to be laid off. Given a choice of
A. Worker who is messing up a lot
B. Worker who does an adequate job
C. Worker who does a great job
I would lay off Worker A without even considering their personal life.
I think that the email could be a big deal. There's likely to be a lot of client/account/business info that Laid Off Guy has no business accessing. And, he could potentially do a lot of harm to the company. He could misuse company information, steal client lists, etc. Also, any messages coming from that address are a representation of the company. If he were feeling vengeful and immature, he could stir up a lot of trouble sending mean, insulting emails from the company address.
he was supposed to not cause any trouble?
I think he has a family and he didnt do anything horrible so why cause any problems. I'm not a computer worker though so maybe I'm wrong? I don't like to think my brother is mean but I think he is here?
Laid Off Guy knew he wasn't supposed to 'cause trouble.' If it can affect the terms of his severance, you can bet your bottom dollar that he was made aware of it at the time. Laid Off Guy made choices
and now has to live with the consequences
. Brother is in the position of enforcing those consequences; that doesn't make him mean.