General Business Labor & Employment Civil Remedies

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Pa. Superior Court Affirms Punitive Damage Award in Breach of Noncompetition Agreement

The Pennsylvania Superior Court has affirmed a lower court ruling that assesses punitive damages against several individuals and their new employer resulting from their en masse departure from a previous firm and, in the...more

Texas Appellate Court Affirms Injunctive Relief and $2.8 Million Award in Attorney’s Fees Against Former Employee in Trade Secret...

A Texas Court of Appeals held on August 22, 2016, that a former employer was entitled to $2.8 million in attorney’s fees against a former employee who used the employer’s information to compete against it. The Court reached...more

Court Upholds Enforceability of “Clickwrap” Employee Agreement

As we have previously discussed, if you want your electronic contracts to be enforceable, it is a best practice to require the counterparty to affirmatively accept the contract by checking a box or clicking a button. A recent...more

Changes to the Taxation of Termination Payments

Termination payments are payments made to individuals as a result of their loss of employment. They are often made up of different components including statutory redundancy, compensation for loss of office, damages and...more

Attention, Businesses! Federal Law Provides New Tools for Protecting Your Trade Secrets

Your business’s formula for success may not be akin to a recipe for a secret sauce. But it is likely that you do not want to share with your direct competitors the unique business methods you have developed over time or your...more

EEOC Sues Midwest Freight Systems for Breach of Mediation Agreement

Company Refused to Honor Agreement to Pay Monetary Relief to Charging Party, Federal Agency Charges - DETROIT - Midwest Freight Systems Corporation, a freight transportation company with headquarters in Warren, Mich.,...more

Agreement Prohibiting Solicitation of Employees by Former Employee may be Unenforceable

A recent decision from the Wisconsin Court of Appeals has raised serious questions regarding non-solicitation agreements that are often included as part of an employment agreement or severance agreement. A non-solicitation...more

SEC Targets Employment Agreements Requiring Waiver of Whistleblower Awards

The SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower continues to examine employee severance, settlement and confidentiality agreements for language that might chill reporting of securities violations to the SEC and other regulators. The...more

SEC Continues To Scrutinize Separation Agreements

On August 16, 2016, the SEC announced that Health Net Inc. (Company) agreed to pay a $340,000 penalty to settle charges that it violated Rule 21F-17 by using severance agreements that allegedly prohibited its employees from...more

Uber’s $100 Million Settlement Falls Apart

In a surprising development, a federal court judge rejected a proposed settlement yesterday which would have seen gig giant Uber pay up to $100 million to resolve a series of legal claims challenging its classification model,...more

SEC Continues Crackdown on Whistleblower Restrictions: Calls Qui Tam Waivers "Targeting"

The SEC announced its second enforcement action in a week against a company using severance or confidentiality agreements requiring employees to waive whistleblower bounties or their right to bring a qui tam action....more

SEC Fines Companies for Anti-Whistleblower Language in Severance Agreements

The Securities and Exchange Commission recently announced the settlement of two proceedings regarding the SEC’s whistleblower protection framework, resulting in over $500,000 in penalties. Both of the companies were charged...more

Fourth Circuit Decision Reminds Employers That Overbroad Noncompete Agreements May Not Be Enforceable

If your company operates in a territory covered by the 4th circuit (Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina) and requires employees to sign a noncompete agreement with language similar to the...more

3 Severance Agreement Time-bombs

Last week the SEC entered a cease and desist agreement with BlueLinx Holdings, fining the company $265,000.00 for including unlawful confidentiality and waiver provisions in its severance agreements. BlueLinx used a variety...more

You Cannot Create A Restrictive Covenant Out of Thin Air

I recently read a lengthy, and I have to admit, well-crafted letter by one employer (who I will call Company A) accusing a former executive (Mr. B) of violating every conceivable restriction relating to recruiting employees...more

DOJ and SEC Collect $22 Million from LAN Airlines for Conduct in Resolving Labor Dispute

Last week, the Justice Department and the SEC announced parallel FCPA settlements totaling $22 million in fines, penalties and disgorgement against LAN Airlines, a Chile-based airline, for conduct in resolving a labor dispute...more

Employment Law - July 2016 #2

Take Two: EEOC Amends Pay Data Collection Proposal - Why it matters - Tweaking its initial plan, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) released an updated proposal about the collection of pay data from...more

Nevada Confirms Its Restrictive Covenant Law, But Rejects Blue Penciling

In the first decision to reach the Nevada Supreme Court on whether state district courts may modify or “blue pencil” non-competition agreements, the high court has concluded that doing so would violate Nevada law. Golden Road...more

Illinois Restrictive Covenants: July 2016 Update

Heads up, Illinois employers with post-employment restrictive covenants: three new cases may impact your enforcement efforts. One continues the split between state and federal courts as to whether continued employment is...more

Defend Trade Secrets Notification Requirement

Most companies are aware that President Obama recently signed into law new federal trade secret protection, entitled the Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA). The DTSA provides protection for trade secrets similar to that found in...more

Sit Back and Relax – Is there a Duty to Mitigate after Termination of a Fixed-Term Contract?

The Ontario Court of Appeal recently issued its decision in Howard v. Benson Group Inc. 2016 ONCA 256, relating to the termination of a fixed-term employment contract. The Plaintiff, Mr. Howard, was a Truck Shop Manager who...more

Nevada Supreme Court Refuses To “Blue Pencil” Unreasonable Non-Compete

Nevada, unlike California, applies a reasonableness test to non-compete agreements. Although the Nevada courts haven’t identified a specific heuristic to be followed, a covenant not to compete will be found to be...more

Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016: What Does It Mean for Employers?

On May 11, 2016, President Obama signed the Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA) into law, creating a federal claim for misappropriation of trade secrets. Concerns with the difficulty of protecting trade secrets have grown as...more

Mid-Year Review: New Non-Compete Legislation in 2016

In the first half of 2016, we have already seen significant changes to a number of state non-compete laws. In this post, we provide a compilation of recently enacted legislation in Alabama, Connecticut, Idaho, Oregon, and...more

[Webinar] Defend Trade Secrets Act and Ex Parte Seizures: Strategic Considerations - July 20th, 1:00p.m. ET

The Defend Trade Secrets Act recently passed in Congress is designed to expand the toolbox for trade secret protection, and it necessitates changes to agreements and policies with contractors, consultants and employees....more

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