SQL Stored Procedure - GetDataView Length parameter passed to SUBSTRING function error

I am receiving the fairly common "GetDataView Length parameter passed to SUBSTRING function" error when my server side code calls the respective SQL Stored proc to save the data.

The code in the SP is as follows:
Employee_First_Nm = case
                 When @sEventType = 'EI'
                    Then
                  (select em.First_Name_Display_Tx from vw_HSRS_People em where em.AD_Account_Tx = @sEmployee)
                    Else
                         SUBSTRING(@sEmployeeCd, CHARINDEX(',', @sEmployeeCd)  + 1, LEN(@sEmployeeCd)) End,  
Employee_Last_Nm = Case
                 When @sEventType = 'EI'
                    Then
                      (select em.Last_Name_Tx from vw_HSRS_People em where em.AD_Account_Tx = @sEmployee)
                    Else
                      SUBSTRING(@sEmployeeCd, 0, CHARINDEX(',', @sEmployeeCd)) End,

As you can see I am negating the substring if the @EventType = 'EI'.   I verified in debug mode that @EventType is in fact equal 'EI'...
So why am I getting the Substring error?  It should be going to the THEN logic in the case statement, correct?
66chawgerAsked:
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lcohanDatabase AnalystCommented:
What exact error are you getting? Did you considered the NULL's returned by whatever reason that will mess-up your SUBSTRING function?
66chawgerAuthor Commented:
lcohan,

Exact error is:

GetDataView: Invalid Length parameter passed to SUBSTRING function.  

Why would the SUBSTRING function even come into focus in this situation because the condition for the case statement should process the THEN logic.... Am I missing something?   Yes, I understand about the nulls, but what exactly is occurring here to cause the SUBSTRING portion of the case statement to be validated???
lcohanDatabase AnalystCommented:
It is definitely going on the ELSE branch for whatever reason and either a negative values (most common) or some NULL gets into the SUBSTRING function evaluation.
I deal with these kind of issues by (old kindergarten school) using PRINT 'Now I am here bla-bla....'; commands instead of the actual SUBSTRING or whatever to see what your SELECT returns.
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66chawgerAuthor Commented:
I agree.... ironic you should mention using print... I use that outside the select, but when I put a print inside the select sql won't parse....  Are you saying comment the substring and put a print below?

I did do a print on the Event_type_cd before the select and it is definitely = 'EI'..... Also picking at straws, I tried using both != and <>...   <> is standard, but both are accepted.
lcohanDatabase AnalystCommented:
I'm not sure where/how you use the statement you posted (is in an UPDATE or you need to fill in variables via a SELECT ,which is wrong btw...>) but I just used your query and flipped it as a SELECT to see where you are...
......
SELECT       case
        When @sEventType = 'EI'
        THEN 'here on Employee_First_Nm - THEN...'
         --(select em.First_Name_Display_Tx from vw_HSRS_People em where em.AD_Account_Tx = @sEmployee)
        Else 'here on Employee_First_Nm - ELSE...'
         --SUBSTRING(@sEmployeeCd, CHARINDEX(',', @sEmployeeCd)  + 1, LEN(@sEmployeeCd))
        End AS Employee_First_Nm,  
            Case
                  When @sEventType = 'EI'
                  Then 'here on Employee_Last_Nm - THEN...'
                        --(select em.Last_Name_Tx from vw_HSRS_People em where em.AD_Account_Tx = @sEmployee)
                  Else 'here on Employee_Last_Nm - ELSE...'
                --SUBSTRING(@sEmployeeCd, 0, CHARINDEX(',', @sEmployeeCd))
                  End AS Employee_Last_Nm,
....

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66chawgerAuthor Commented:
This is an insert into using the select.

" (is in an UPDATE or you need to fill in variables via a SELECT ,which is wrong btw...>)" ?
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Microsoft SQL Server 2005

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