On January 1, 2022, the latest amendments to the Illinois Freedom to Work Act (“Act”) became effective. As we previously described, that Act sets forth various requirements governing restrictive covenant agreements in Illinois. Among other things, the Act codified the so-called Fifield Rule by defining adequate consideration for enforcement of a restrictive covenant to be either two years ofContinue Reading Questions Remain Regarding Adequate Consideration under Illinois’ Freedom to Work Act
For those interested in commenting on the FTC’s proposed rule banning nearly all non-competes, today, April 19, is your deadline to do so!
To date, approximately 25,000 comments have been submitted to the FTC, from individuals, corporations, and various industry groups and legal associations. That includes a comment from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce (as part of a coalition…Continue Reading Today’s the Day: Deadline to Submit Comments to the FTC
With the extension, the FTC will now be accepting comments on the proposed rule until April 19. Originally, the deadline for submitting comments was March 20.
Information on how to submit comments can be found in the Federal Register notice.…
On February 16, 2023, the FTC hosted a public forum for the purpose of examining the proposed rule banning non-compete agreements. The agenda included, among other things, opening remarks from Chair Kahn, an overview of the rulemaking process by the FTC’s general counsel, a panel discussion, and comments from the public. A recording of the forum is available here.
In her preliminary remarks, Chair Kahn claimed that the proposed rule would increase workers’ earnings significantly and non-competes are an unfair method of competition. She claimed that the FTC has deep expertise on non-competes based upon enforcement, analysis, and addressing public comments. During the explanatory session, FTC staff explained that the comment period ends March 20th and encouraged the submission of additional comments. Staff also explained the functional test in the proposed rule and indicated that the ban applies to any agreement that functionally operates as a non-compete, which could be an overly broad non-disclosure agreement or training repayment agreement. FTC staff stated that the proposed rule does not apply to “run of the mill non-disclosures.”…
Earlier today, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) published a proposed rule which would ban all non-compete agreements between employers and “workers” (broadly defined to include employees, independent contractors, interns, and others). If adopted, the proposed rule will bar both prospective and existing non-compete agreements. The FTC included an overview fact sheet describing the proposed rule.
The FTC is seeking public comment on the proposed rule, which is based on a preliminary finding that non-competes constitute an unfair method of competition and therefore violate Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act. This proposed rule aligns with the FTC’s recent statement to attempt to reinvigorate Section 5 of the FTC Act, which bans unfair methods of competition.…
The American Intellectual Property Law Association recently completed its Trade Secrets Summit in Miami, Florida. The topics for the conference included:
On September 1, 2022, Representative Mike Garcia (CA-25) introduced H.R. 8755, titled The Restoring Workers’ Rights Act (the “RWRA”), which would effectively ban non-compete agreements for non-exempt (low-to-mid wage) employees nationwide. If enacted, the RWRA would follow similar legislation in states such as Illinois, Colorado, Washington, and others that have imposed statutory income minimums that must be met in order for employers to bind employees to post-employment restrictive covenants.
Continue Reading California Representative Mike Garcia Introduces Federal Bill Barring Non-Compete Agreements
In June 2022, a federal judge sitting in the Southern District of New York issued an order denying defendants Lionbridge Technologies, Inc. (“Lionbridge”) and its parent company HIG Middle Market, LLC (“HIG”) attorneys’ fees and costs related to their assertion that plaintiff Transperfect Global, LLC (“Transperfect”) brought a misappropriation of trade secrets claim under the Defend Trade Secrets Act (“DTSA”) in bad faith. The 2019 lawsuit was filed roughly 15 months after completion of a bidding war for the sale of Transperfect in a Delaware court-supervised auction. One of the participants in the auction was HIG, which had acquired Lionbridge—a competitor of Transperfect—in February 2017. In its suit, Transperfect alleged that HIG engaged in “fake bidding” during the auction so that it could access trade secrets in the form of confidential pricing data and customer lists and improperly share them with Lionbridge to poach two of Transperfect’s biggest clients.
Continue Reading No Fees for Failure to Show “Bad Faith” in Prosecution of Trade Secrets Claim
Seyfarth Partners Robert Milligan, Erik Weibust, and Marcus Mintz, as well as senior associate Alex Meier will each be participating in the 2021 Annual Meeting of The Sedona Conference Working Group 12 (WG12) on Trade Secrets on December 13-14, 2021 in Phoenix, Arizona.
The mission of Working Group 12 is to develop consensus and nonpartisan principles for managing trade secret…
Continue Reading Seyfarth Attorneys to Participate at 2021 Annual Meeting of The Sedona Conference Working Group 12 (WG12) on Trade Secrets
As in real estate, as in law. A recent ruling in the USDC for the District of Colorado demonstrates that procedural considerations of where to file may often have substantive consequences. Plaintiff LS3, Inc. (“LS3”) sued Cherokee Federal Solutions, LLC (“CFS”) and various former employees of LS3 in the United States District Court for the District of Colorado. The gist of the action was that CFS, a competitor of LS3, solicited away former employees of LS3 to work for CFS in violation of employee non-compete agreements. Claims were asserted against the individual employees for breach of the restrictive covenant agreements and against CFS for tortious interference with those same agreements. Critically, the agreements at issue all contained Maryland choice-of-law provisions but apparently no venue or forum provisions.
Continue Reading Location, Location, Location