I'm in a lot of meetings on a daily basis. So I usually take notes to help me remember what we discussed during the meeting and to have a backlog of any tasks I might need to perform.
Recently I've been taking digital notes with OneNote (in stead of just writing them down in a paper notebook). Everyone knows I take digital notes (it is kind of hard not to notice) and so often I'm asked to share my notes on a particular meeting because my colleagues didn't take any, or insufficient notes. Considering they always ask in a friendly manner, I'm happy to share my notes with them.
But, this has got me thinking; can my client force me to hand over my notes to them (against my will)?
Some background information:
- I am an independent contractor for my client
- I work on my own laptop (professionally, provided by my own company)
- Most of the information that is discussed during meetings is of a sensitive nature. Thus, I take care to protect my notes and I only share my notes with colleagues who are also entitled to this information.
- I am bound by a non-disclosure agreement so I cannot share the notes with anyone else (other than people working for my client who have my level of authorization), but this is not the subject of the question nor does my NDA or contract say anything about me having to share my notes with my client.
- The fact that my notes are digital are not that relevant to the question, the same would apply to paper notes, but digital notes are a lot easier to share (and considering my bad handwriting) a lot easier to read
- Some of my notes might contain personal thoughts or tasks. Nothing NSFW or anything like that, but things I'd prefer not to share with my client.