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Trading Secrets A Law Blog on Trade Secrets, Non-Competes, and Computer Fraud

Tag Archives: non-competes

Neglect of Cloud Computing Policies In Workplace Can Provide Perfect Storm for Trade Secret Theft

Posted in Cybersecurity, Data Theft, Privacy, Trade Secrets

By Robert Milligan, Jessica Mendelson, and Joshua Salinas

Prudent employers are often looking for areas in their business where valuable company data  may not be adequately protected.

Enter the growing prevalence of third party online data storage for professional and personal use in the workplace, coupled with the increasing accessibility provided by employers to access company data remotely. …

Upcoming Complimentary Webinar: Trade Secret and Non-Compete Considerations in Asia

Posted in International, Practice & Procedure, Restrictive Covenants, Trade Secrets

To accommodate our global audience, Seyfarth’s eighth installment in its 2013 Trade Secrets Webinar Series will be available as an on-demand broadcast this month! On Tuesday, August 27, 2013, Seyfarth attorneys Dominic Hodson, Wan Li, and Robert Milligan will discuss non-compete and trade secret issues in China, including best practices to protect trade secrets and confidential information in the country. …

California Federal Court Allows Non-Signatory to Arbitration Agreement to Compel Arbitration in Trade Secrets Dispute

Posted in Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, Restrictive Covenants, Trade Secrets

A federal district court in the Northern District of California recently found that a non-signatory to an arbitration agreement may enforce that agreement against a signatory and compel arbitration under the doctrine of equitable estoppel.

Semin, a software developer, worked for Torbit, Inc. He signed an employment agreement containing a proprietary information non-disclosure provision, and a commitment not to compete …

Upcoming Client Webinar on July 11: When Trade Secrets Cross International Borders

Posted in Trade Secrets

The fifth webinar of the 2012 series will focus on non-compete and trade secret considerations from an international perspective. The webinar will provide a high level discussion of recent non-compete and trade secret issues that impact foreign companies conducting business in the United States. This program will provide an overview of the key considerations that foreign companies should appreciate in …

Federal Court Reverses Prior Decision on Retroactive Impact of New Georgia Restrictive Covenant Act

Posted in Non-Compete Enforceability

By Dan Hart

As we have written on this blog before, on May 11, 2011 Georgia reissued its new Restrictive Covenant Act (“New Act”) in order to resolve concerns about the constitutionality and effectiveness of a nearly identical statute that the state’s legislature had previously enacted in 2009. The 2009 version of the statute was contingent on voters’ approval …

Iowa – Sophisticated Employees Bound by Reasonable Restrictive Covenants; Plaintiff to Post $2 Million Bond

Posted in Non-Compete Enforceability

 A recent Iowa U.S. district court decision upheld two-year, geographically reasonable, non-compete agreements signed by 26 veterinarians while they were employed by Iowa Veterinary Specialties, P.C. (IVS), a Des Moines, Iowa clinic they owned. When two of the vets and IVS’s operations manager learned that its sale to ISU Veterinary Services Corporation (VSC) was imminent, they used IVS’s business information and …

Illinois House of Representatives Revisits Non-Compete Statute

Posted in Non-Compete Enforceability

We informed our readers on March 31, 2009 about Illinois House Bill 4040, titled "Illinois Covenants Not to Compete Act" (link). House Bill 4040 attempted to limit non-compete enforcement to employees or independent contractors who:…

have substantial involvement in the executive management of the employer’s business;
have direct and substantial contact with the employer’s customers;
possess knowledge of the

New Day in Georgia for Restrictive Covenants

Posted in Non-Compete Enforceability

On November 2, Georgians voted overwhelmingly in favor of updating Georgia’s restrictive covenant law. The new law is codified at O.C.G.A. 13-8-50 et seq. 

The law is not retroactive, so it does not affect existing contracts.  However, for many businesses who have learned that their agreements are not enforceable under Georgia law as it existed previously, now is the …

Massachusetts Is Not California; At Least Not Yet!

Posted in Non-Compete Enforceability

By Kate Perrelli and Erik Weibust

On October 7, 2009, the Massachusetts Legislature’s Joint Committee on Labor and Workforce Development held a hearing on a non-compete bill, House No. 1799, sponsored by Representatives Will Brownsberger and Lori Ehrlich. Representatives Brownsberger and Ehrlich had each previously sponsored their own independent bills – Brownsberger’s based on California’s statute that bans non-compete agreements altogether, …

Illinois Appellate Court Says Legitimate Business Interest Not Necessary to Enforce a Covenant-Not-To-Compete

Posted in Non-Compete Enforceability

In a landmark decision just issued, the Illinois Appellate Court, Fourth District, ruled that an ex-employer seeking to enforce a covenant-not-to-compete against former sales personnel need only show that the time-and-territory restrictions are reasonable and need not prove, in addition, that there is a sufficient legitimate-business-interest in enforcement. 

In Sunbelt Rentals, Inc. v. Ehlers, No. 4-09-0290 (9/23/09), the appellate tribunal …

Nondisclosure Agreement Found to Fall Short Without an Accompanying Non-Compete

Posted in Restrictive Covenants

In the back and forth battle between companies and former employees regarding the confidential nature of customer information, the United States District Court for the District of Nebraska has just issued a decision of note in Softchoice Corp. v. MacKenzie, 08-cv-00249. By the decision, the Court dismissed the action as against the defendant, finding that despite plaintiff’s treatment of the information …

New York Federal Court Rejects Attempt to Recast State-Law Trade Secrets and Unfair Competition Claims as Federal Antitrust Claims

Posted in Unfair Competition

Emigra Group, LLC v. Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy LLP, et al., No. 07 Civ. 10688 (LAK) (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 31, 2009).

In a decision that should be considerable reassurance to employers in general and law firms in particular, a district judge in New York has rejected an antitrust claim brought by a consulting firm against its former employer, an …

UNHEALTHY COMPETITION – Daily Journal

Posted in Non-Compete Enforceability

April 02, 2009
Daily Journal   Reprinted and/or posted with the permission of Daily Journal Corp. (2009).

By Robert Milligan and Nicholas Waddles

The California Supreme Court’s decision in Edwards v. Arthur Andersen LLP, 44 Cal.4th 937 (2008), reaffirmed that employee non-competition agreements are void in California unless they fall within narrow exceptions to Business and Professions Code Section 16600.

Notwithstanding …

While Illinois Senate Considers Dramatic Alterations to Illinois Trade Secrets Act, Illinois House of Representatives Seeks to Enact Non-Competition Statute

Posted in Non-Compete Enforceability

As discussed in our March 9th  and 17th postings, Illinois Senate Bill SB 2149 seeks to dramatically alter the landscape of trade secret enforcement and litigation in Illinois by, among other things, (a) requiring disclosure of trade secrets before a party issues written or oral discovery; (b) awarding attorneys’ fees to the prevailing party in a trade secrets case; and …

New Hampshire Judge Dissolves Injunction Preventing Former Dell EqualLogic Executive From Working for Competitor

Posted in Non-Compete Enforceability

EqualLogic, Inc. v. Shea, (N.H. Superior Court, Hillsborough County).

In an unusual reversal, a Nashua, New Hampshire judge admitted recently that she had erred in granting a preliminary injunction barring a former executive for computer data storage company EqualLogic from working for a competitor. 

EqualLogic was acquired by computer giant Dell for approximately $1.4 billion shortly before area vice president …

Tennessee Court of Appeals Reverses Dismissal of Former Employer’s Complaint Alleging Violations of Non-compete Agreement

Posted in Non-Compete Enforceability

In Southern Fire Analysis v. Rambo, No. M2008-00056-COA-R3-CV, 2009 WL 161088 (Tenn. Ct. App. Jan. 22, 2009), the Tennessee Court of Appeals reversed a trial court’s dismissal of a complaint alleging violations of three non-compete agreements. The facts are as follows:

Plaintiff Southern Fire Analysis is in the business of investigating fires on behalf of insurance company clients. Southern Fire Analysis employed …

Georgia’s House Study Committee on Restrictive Covenants in the Commercial Arena Issues Final Report

Posted in Restrictive Covenants

Just before the end of 2008, Georgia’s House Study Committee on Restrictive Covenants in the Commercia Arena, chaired by Representative Kevin Levitas, issued its final report, asking for support to ”[m]oderniz[e] Georgia law” and to “attract new business to our great state and retain those companies that are already located here.” 

Following two hearings involving testimony and letters from …

Wisconsin Supreme Court Upholds Verdict Enforcing Non-compete Provision in Sale of Business Agreement

Posted in Restrictive Covenants

In D.L. Anderson’s Lakeside Leisure Co. v. Anderson, the Wisconsin Supreme Court recently upheld an award of damages for violation of a non-compete provision in a sale of business agreement. The facts of situation are as follows:

D.L. Anderson built D.L. Anderson Co., a business offering a range of marine services and products, such as shore landscaping and manufacturing and …

Non-compete Litigation in the Financial Services Industry

Posted in Non-Compete Enforceability

As a result of the instability in the financial markets generally and at financial institutions in particular, the financial services industry has experienced significant turnover in 2008. The below chartrecently found in the New York Times reflects that the financial services industry has experienced more layoffs than any other industry.

  

 

Because of the importance of relationships between brokers …

New Ninth Circuit Case Acknowledges Trade Secrets Exception to Business and Professions Code Section 16600

Posted in Trade Secrets

 By James McNairy & Robert Milligan

A new Ninth Circuit case, Asset Marketing Systems, Inc. v. Gagnon, 2008 WL 4138181 (Sept. 9, 2008), acknowledges (at least in dicta) that there is a trade secrets exception to Business and Professions Code Section 16600.

In the case, Gagnon, an independent contractor who developed computer programs for AMS, a field marketing organization, alleged, …

Georgia House & Senate Committees Meet to Consider Restrictive Covenants in the Commercial Arena

Posted in Restrictive Covenants

This morning (September 24, 2008), Rep. Kevin Levitas and Sen. Judson Hill from the Georgia Legislature convened the first meeting of a legislative study committee reviewing the law of Georgia with respect to restrictive covenants in employment and business relationships. The House Committee is chaired by Representative Kevin Levitas, and includes the following members: Representative Tim Bearden; Representative Butch Parrish; Representative Richard …

Georgia House Study Committee to Meet on Restrictive Covenants in the Commercial Arena

Posted in Non-Compete Enforceability

 Following is a Press Release from the Georgia House of Representatives.

PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Lindsey Thompson

August 26, 2008

(404) 656-5020

 

lindsey.thompson@house.ga.gov

Speaker Richardson Appoints Representative Kevin Levitas to Chair House Study Committee on Restrictive Covenants in the Commercial Arena

 

 

ATLANTA –Speaker of the House Glenn Richardson (R-Hiram) has appointed Representative Kevin Levitas (D-Atlanta) …