Validez y utilidad procesal de las grabaciones telefónicas en el marco de un proceso laboral

-Por el Dr. Juan Pablo Trasmonte –

i) Introducción

Con el desarrollo de la tecnología y su implementación en el marco de las relaciones de trabajo, se han generado situaciones que no se encuentran expresamente reguladas en la normativa laboral y que, necesariamente, quedan libradas a la interpretación de cada una de las partes de la relación y, en última instancia, de un tercero imparcial que determine la procedencia o la improcedencia de tal o cual medida.

En relación a las grabaciones llevadas a cabo en el marco de relaciones laborales entre el empleador y el trabajador, teniendo en cuenta el espíritu de la Ley de Contrato de Trabajo y la protección especial de la que es objeto el empleado, su aplicación, validez y utilidad son cuestiones que han sido controvertidas – a decir verdad, continúan siéndolo en los estrados judiciales -, con una cierta inclinación a admitir su validez probatoria bajo el cumplimiento de una serie de requisitos, que a lo largo del presente artículo desarrollaremos.

Resulta indudable que el eje principal en torno al cual giran los debates más relevantes en la materia resulta ser la colisión entre la facultad de control del empleador y el derecho a la intimidad e incluso al principio de no discriminación y trato digno que goza todo trabajador en el marco de una relación de trabajo. En este artículo estudiaremos someramente los recaudos que debe tomar el empleador a los fines de ejercer su facultad de control y que eventualmente cada grabación goce de cierta utilidad probatoria en el marco de un proceso judicial para, de ese modo, no vulnerar facultades y garantías inherentes no solo a la condición de trabajador de cada uno de sus empleados, sino también a la de ser humano.

ii) Implementación de sistemas de grabación de voz – Requisitos de validez constitucional

En la utilización de sistemas de grabación de voz, y analizada la cuestión desde el punto de vista del empleador, el empleador debe ser sumamente prudente en su implementación, dado el fino límite existente entre el ejercicio correcto y el abusivo de la facultad de control anteriormente mencionada, encontrándose en juego el derecho a la intimidad y a la dignidad inherente a cada empleado.

En la materia, la Ley de Contrato de Trabajo hace especial hincapié en la necesidad de preservar y salvaguardar la dignidad del trabajador en la implementación de sistemas de control personal – conforme art. 70 de la normativa citada-.

En razón de lo expuesto, consideramos que cualquier sistema de registro de llamadas telefónicas debería cumplir, al menos, con los siguientes requisitos para minimizar cualquier eventual contingencia:

a) Funcionalidad y razonabilidad: dado que el ejercicio de los derechos del empleador no es absoluto, oportunamente se debería poder acreditar que la implementación del sistema de control se debió a razones funcionales – es decir, que hacen al desarrollo de la empresa y que contribuyen al logro del objeto de la misma-.

b) Notificación fehaciente al trabajador: el sujeto cuyas conversaciones serán grabadas debe encontrarse en conocimiento de tal circunstancia, en lo posible mediante un medio fehaciente, a fin de preservar su derecho a la intimidad y que el control no se efectúe en forma abusiva, vulnerando garantías constitucionales que se encuentran en cabeza del trabajador.

c) Utilización de grabaciones de contenido exclusivamente laboral: las circunstancias en las que se ha admitido la utilización de grabaciones como prueba en un proceso judicial se limitan a aquellas en las que exclusivamente el contenido de las mismas sea de índole laboral. Carecen absolutamente de valor probatorio aquellas cuestiones ajenas a la relación laboral que une a las partes, tales como manifestaciones de carácter personal. Ello no implica que, en caso de destinar los teléfonos que se le entregan a los trabajadores con fines exclusivamente laborales y éstos se aparten de dicha directiva no sean pasibles de sanción alguna, sino que podrán ser sancionados por el uso indebido del teléfono de la empresa y no por el contenido de las llamadas.

d) Igualdad de trato: siendo consecuencia directa e inherente de la relación laboral, el sistema de grabación de llamadas debe ser aplicado a la totalidad de la planta de trabajadores de la empresa o, al menos, en forma homogénea a grupos objetivamente determinados. No es recomendable la grabación de llamadas de trabajadores puntuales, dada la asimilación de tales prácticas a conductas persecutorias que pueden derivar en aplicaciones de normas anti-discriminatorias con graves consecuencias económicas.

e) Debida denuncia en el Registro Nacional de Bases de Datos: la empresa proveedora del servicio de registración debe, con una periodicidad anual, denunciar ante el Registro Nacional de Bases de Datos, que cuenta en sus archivos con datos de voz y grabaciones de empleados de la firma.

iii) Fuerza probatoria de la grabación telefónica

La cuestión del valor probatorio que se le asigna a una grabación de una llamada telefónica ha sido largamente debatida en la jurisprudencia nacional. En un primer momento, la misma fue despreciada en forma francamente mayoritaria pero, en los últimos años, tal postura se fue suavizando y ampliando, arribando en la actualidad a un criterio compartido en general por los magistrados de la Cámara Nacional de Apelaciones del Trabajo.

La eficacia probatoria de la grabación telefónica está dada por la sofisticación técnica que permita, en un mayor grado de certeza, la integridad de la prueba – es decir, que la misma no ha sido manipulada artificialmente – y la posibilidad que la tecnología permita de imputar determinada conversación a un sujeto puntual.

En otras palabras, una grabación de una llamada telefónica será valiosa desde un punto de vista procesal únicamente si logra demostrarse mediante una pericia técnica que el sistema utilizado para la obtención y el mantenimiento del material es inviolable, como así también acreditar que un llamado pertenece a un trabajador específico.

Cabe destacar que, en los contados casos en los que se ha acreditado la existencia de un sistema lo suficientemente seguro como para preservar incólume a su contenido, no se le ha asignado tampoco un valor probatorio absoluto sino que ha debido ser complementado con otros medios probatorios, en el marco de una interpretación armónica de los resultados de los mismos.

CONCLUSIONES

En conclusión, entendemos que una aplicación funcional y razonable de un sistema de grabación de llamadas telefónica, tanto en el marco de una relación comercial o laboral, es válida desde un punto de vista legal, supeditada dicha validez a una serie de requisitos.

En relación a la eficacia probatoria de las grabaciones, dependerá de la certeza que pueda brindar en un eventual pleito el sistema utilizado, siendo únicamente valiosos aquellos que cuentan con niveles de protección e inmutabilidad de la información sumamente elevados, debiendo además ser complementados con otros medios probatorios.


Referencias del autor: 

Abogado egresado de la Facultad de Derecho y Ciencias Sociales de la Universidad de Buenos Aires. Diploma de Honor. Máster en Derecho Empresario Económico de la Pontificia Universidad Católica Argentina.

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