Restrictive Covenants Hiring & Firing

News & Analysis as of

4.5 Million Reasons to Abide by a Non-Solicitation Agreement

On September 9, 2016, the Pennsylvania Superior Court upheld an award of $4.5 million in punitive damages against several former employees, who violated non-compete/non-solicitation agreements with their former employers. In...more

Government Attacks on Non-Compete Agreements Continue

Non-compete agreements have long been used by employers as an effective tool to protect their valuable trade secrets and confidential information. However, employers’ overuse of non-compete agreements and employers’ practice...more

A Rose by Any Other Name is Not as Sweet: When a Non-Solicit is Actually a Non-Compete

The Ontario Court of Appeal has held that the words “accept business”, in what the employer intended to be a non-solicitation clause, served to restrict competition and is therefore not merely a non-solicitation...more

New Illinois Law Restricts Use of Employee Non-Compete Agreements

Governor Bruce Rauner has signed into law the Illinois Freedom to Work Act, prohibiting private sector employers from requiring their “low-wage employees” to sign non-compete agreements. The Act takes effect on January 1,...more

Illinois Limits Non-Compete Agreements Yet Again

On August 19, 2016, Governor Bruce Rauner officially signed into law the Illinois Freedom to Work Act (the “Act”), with an effective date of January 1, 2017. The Act, while short and to the point, will have a significant...more

RIGHT IN THE BREADBASKET: Lessons From Early Cases at the Intersection of Noncompetes and the DTSA

As many TSW readers are aware, 2016 has been a big year for trade secret law, with both the United States and the European Union expanding trade secrets protections and increasing the uniformity of their laws. But as good as...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

NY Attorney General Schneiderman Declares “War” on Non-Compete Agreements That He Perceives as Overbroad

In an initiative that is virtually without precedent in New York, in the past two months (June 15, June 22 and August 4) Attorney General Schneiderman announced agreements with three separate companies in three different...more

FEATURE: Proper Use of Confidential Information Provisions

One of the significant pitfalls businesses encounter is the misuse of confidentiality provisions in company policies and employment agreements. Nearly all employers include restrictive covenants prohibiting the use or...more

State Attorneys General on the Attack Against Noncompete Overuse

Too much of a good thing can be bad – a maxim that some employers have historically ignored by requiring entire workforces, including rank-and-file employees, to submit to post-employment noncompete obligations as a condition...more

A Month in UK Employment Law - August 2016

News & Legislation Update - The UK votes to leave the EU - We could not write a roundup of news stories from the UK without referencing the UK's vote to leave the EU. The so-called "Brexit" has created...more

Does Your Severance Trigger ERISA? Why You Should Care and What You Should Do

Generally speaking, many employers do not think about the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) when it comes to severance, whether at the front end, when employment agreements or policies are negotiated and...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

New Restrictions on Physician Non-Competes in Connecticut

A new Connecticut law significantly restricts the use of physician non-compete agreements. Public Act No. 16-95 (the “Act”), signed into law by Governor Dannel Malloy on June 2, 2016, limits the allowable duration and...more

Non-Compete Legislation In Massachusetts: Could It Actually Happen?

On May 16, 2016, the Massachusetts General Court’s Joint Committee on Labor & Workforce Development reviewed a re-drafted bill concerning non-compete agreements in the Commonwealth and reported it out of the Committee...more

The Dearth of Restrictive Covenant Case Law in Georgia

It was five years ago this week (May 11, 2011, to be precise) that Georgia's new restrictive covenant statute went into effect. Prior to the effective date of the statute, Georgia was (surprisingly for many out-of-state...more

Utah's New Post-Employment Restrictions Act Effective Tomorrow

Utah's newly enacted Post-Employment Restrictions Act (Act) takes effect tomorrow and significantly limits the duration of newly entered noncompetition agreements. Employers should review their noncompetition agreements going...more

White House Issues A Call To Arms With Respect To Non-Competes

On May 5, 2016, the White House issued a report largely piggybacking on a recent U.S. Treasury Department study, on which we previously posted, with a primary focus on the purported misuse and negative impacts of non-compete...more

Despite Evidence That Ex-Employee Violated Customer Non-Solicitation Covenant, Injunction Denied Because No “Irreparable” Harm

Touzot was an employee of ROM, a seller of products used in making balsa wood model planes and boats. His employment agreement included a post-termination customer non-solicitation covenant. After he left ROM, he became a...more

Non-Compete Restriction Held To Be Unenforceable

In Bartholomews Agri Food Ltd v Thornton [2016] EWHC 648 (QB), the High Court considered whether a non-compete post-termination restriction was an unlawful restraint of trade. Bartholomews Agri Food Ltd (Bartholomews)...more

Quirky Question #277: Passage of the Defend Trade Secrets Act

Question: I saw something on the news about some new trade secrets legislation. What’s going on with that? Will it help employers better protect their trade secrets?...more

Labor and Employment Group News: U.S. Treasury Issues Report on the Economic Effects of Non-compete Contracts

An office of Economic Policy Report published in March 2016, entitled "Non-Compete Contracts: Economic Effects and Policy Implications," estimates that 18% of all workers, or nearly 30 million people, are covered by...more

Getting Full Value out of Noncompete Agreements

Increasingly, companies are having employees sign noncompete and nonsolicitation agreements in order to protect the company, and its customer base, should the employee leave the company. These agreements are clearly...more

Utah Enacts Post-Employment Restrictions Act

A growing number of states are tightening conditions on restrictive covenants.  The start of 2016 saw Oregon and Alabama enact higher barriers to the enforcement of non-compete agreements in those states. As of March 22,...more

Employee Separation Agreements – A Refresher, Part Three

My first two posts on this topic have discussed provisions that must – under federal law, specifically the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act – be included in employee separation agreements if the employee’s release of...more

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