You're hiring someone's employee? By Charlie Plumb

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First appeared in The Journal Record - October 21, 2010.

Article authored by McAfee & Taft Attorney: Charlie Plumb.

Maybe you’re gaining confidence about your business’s growth and you’ve decided to hire another employee. You are thinking about offering the job to someone who works with one of your competitors. And who could blame you? You don’t have the time or resources to train a neophyte from scratch. And the competitor’s employee already understands the workings of your industry, the marketplace and potential customers. Sound like an easy decision? Not so fast – there are pitfalls you need to consider.

Trade secrets and other confidential business information are subject to protection by Oklahoma law. This protection is not limited to chemical formulas, highly technical designs or the like. If the business information is valuable, not generally known to others, and reasonable steps have been taken to protect its confidentiality, the information may be protected against unauthorized use by or disclosure to others. In addition to techniques or processes, valuable and confidential information regarding customers’ identities and information, financial planning or marketing intentions may fall into a protected category. Sometimes, employers who hire away their competitors’ employees find themselves accused of unlawful use of another’s confidential business information.

When considering employment of a competitor’s employee, here are some things to keep in mind.

Please see full article below for more information.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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