On Friday, the Department of Justice filed a lawsuit against eBay accusing the company of entering a non-compete pact with software maker Intuit. Under the terms of the alleged secret deal, both companies agreed to refrain from recruiting or hiring each other’s employees. According to the DOJ, both companies aggressively policed their respective workforces to
The Zynga saga continues. In October, Zynga – the company that makes popular Facebook games like FarmVille – filed a lawsuit against a former employee, Allan Patmore. In short, Zynga alleges that Patmore left the company, took a ton of confidential information and trade secrets with him then went to work for a competitor Kixeye.
A recent non-compete case out of Missouri raises a number of interesting considerations, including some related to choice of law and conflicts of law. The case is TLC Vision (USA) Corp. v. Freeman, 2012 WL 5398671 (E.D. Mo. Nov. 2, 2012). TLC is basically in the business of running centers that provide vision correction services.
In the realm of non-compete and trade secret litigation, there are certain truisms that have stood the test of time. Among the most basic: Do not take company files with you. This is a classic blunder. You know, like getting involved in a land war in Asia. It is a bad idea. When you take
Yesterday evening, at a cigar bar in Fort Lauderdale (shout out to the Florida Cigar Company), I had a discussion with a few gentlemen that touched upon the issues of confidential information, non-compete agreements and computer forensics. One of these gentlemen was in the process of separating from his current employer and starting his own
As an attorney who defends employees in non-compete cases, I am generally critical of how such agreements are used. For one thing, it seems that everybody has a non-compete agreement these days (maids, bartenders, news anchors), even when the facts suggest that such an agreement is unenforceable. And every plaintiff in every non-compete case runs