Category Archives: Non-Compete

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Defining Business in Louisiana Non-Competition Agreements is Essential, Appeals Court Holds

A Louisiana appeals court in New Orleans recently overturned a trial court’s refusal to enforce a non-competition agreement. The appellate court’s decision instructs employers on the need to define the scope of their businesses for an enforceable agreement. Environmental Safety & Health Consulting Services, Inc. v. Fowler, 2019-CA-813 (La. 4 Cir. 3/11/20). The Dispute. Environmental … Continue Reading

Competing Views on Non-Compete Agreements: Changes May be Coming Across the Nation to Employers’ and Business Purchasers’ Ability to Limit Competition

Employers often place limitations on their employees’ ability to compete following the termination of the employment relationship. The justification for restraints on trade is that employers have a protectable interest in their customer and vendor relationships, the goodwill associated with their brand, and their confidential information and trade secrets. Purchasers of businesses likewise often place … Continue Reading

Louisiana Appellate Court: Time Limit on Non-Compete Runs From Termination, Not Judgement.

An employee’s termination date – that is, the date the employee quits or is fired – may be critical to determining when his non-competition obligations expire. Under Louisiana law, a non-competition agreement may not “exceed a period of two years from termination of employment.” La. R.S. 23:921(C). This rule was recently applied by the Louisiana … Continue Reading

A Recent Trend In Louisiana Non-Compete Cases?

A trend may be developing in favor of non-compete agreements in Louisiana. Two recent appellate court decisions enforced their terms, even though they contained either overly broad or ambiguous language. The first is from the Louisiana Supreme Court, Causin, L.L.C. v. Pace Safety Consultants, LLC, which we have previously discussed. The second is from the U.S. … Continue Reading

Louisiana Supreme Court Allows Employer-Friendly Decision in Non-Compete Case to Stand

Drafting an enforceable (and meaningful) non-compete provision in an employment agreement can be difficult. Many states, like Louisiana, recognize that non-compete provisions in employment agreements raise a serious public policy concern. In Louisiana, this public policy is set forth in La. Rev. Stat. 23:921. It requires non-compete provisions to set forth specific parishes or municipalities in … Continue Reading

Louisiana Court Treats Inevitable Disclosure Provision as Non-Compete Clause Subject to Geographic Restrictions

May an employer enforce a contract provision that forbids an employee to leave and take another job that would require him to use or reveal the employer’s confidential information? In Louisiana, maybe not, unless the agreement complies with Louisiana’s non-compete statute, La. Rev. Stat. § 23:921. In O’Sullivan v. Sunil Gupta, M.D., LLC, 2017 WL … Continue Reading

Time To Review Your Non-Competes

Companies with employees across multiple states face an administrative challenge. How do they ensure that their non-compete programs remain up to date with the various states law requirements for enforcement? Four states have recently passed legislation that reinforces the importance of addressing this question. The highlights below from the changing non-compete landscape should prompt companies to review their … Continue Reading

Tennessee Federal Court Refuses To Apply Inevitable Disclosure Doctrine

Williams-Sonoma is embroiled in a contentious trade secret theft case with its former executive and direct competitor. On June 18, 2015, a federal district court in Tennessee granted a preliminary injunction motion to enjoin Williams-Sonoma’s former vice president and direct competitor from using confidential business information, soliciting Williams-Sonoma employees, and destroying electronic evidence. But the federal court refused to give Williams-Sonoma … Continue Reading

Federal Court Invalidates Tennessee Choice-of-Law Clause in Louisiana Employee’s Non-Compete

The federal district for the Western District of Louisiana added to the growing list of decisions that have applied Louisiana’s non-compete statute to invalidate  choice-of-law or forum-selection clauses. These decisions have struck down clauses that, on their faces, would have required Louisiana employees of non-Louisiana employers to litigate under the law or in the courts of … Continue Reading

Update: Comfortable With Your Non-Compete?

We previously analyzed a Pennsylvania appellate court decision, which held that a non-compete agreement was unenforceable for lack of consideration. The case, Socko v. Mid-Atlantic Systems of CPA, Inc., is now before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. The Court must decide whether Pennsylvania law allows parties to waive the consideration requirement for non-competes through an express agreement. … Continue Reading

“Professional” Distinction: A New Approach To Bans On Non-Competes?

A recent Florida appellate court decision may alter long-standing prohibitions against non-compete agreements for certain professionals. In AmSurg New Port Richey FL Inc. v. Vangara, the court upheld a non-compete, finding that it prohibited a physician from operating a rival business—but not from practicing medicine. This was the pivotal distinction for saving the non-compete, and other state courts could … Continue Reading

Federal Arbitration Act Preempts Louisiana’s Non-Compete Statute

The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana recently held that the Federal Arbitration Act preempts Louisiana’s non-compete statute (La. R.S. 23:921). Among other things, this statute invalidates forum selection clauses in employment agreements unless the employee agrees to or expressly ratifies the clause after the incident that gives rise to the dispute. … Continue Reading

Non-Compete Runs From End of Employment Agreement’s Term, Louisiana Appellate Court Holds

A Louisiana appellate court recently decided that a non-competition agreement was unenforceable.  But not because it contained unreasonable geographic or temporal restrictions or failed to strictly comply with Louisiana’s non-compete statute. Instead, the court found that the non-competition obligations had already expired during employment. That is, even though the employee continued to work for the company … Continue Reading

Tips For Protecting Against Unfair Competition From Within

This is Part One in a three-part series on preventing unfair competition and trade secret theft by former employees.   It’s an all too familiar story. A company spends substantial time and money training employees to run and manage a specific business division. The employees receive access to the company’s confidential information—customer contacts, pricing information, … Continue Reading

Comfortable With Your Non-Compete?

A recent decision from a Pennsylvania appellate court should prompt employers to review their existing non-compete agreements. They may be unenforceable if applicable state laws have changed. In Socko v. Mid-Atlantic Systems of CPA, Inc., a Pennsylvania appellate court considered a common non-compete concern, but it was the first time that a Pennsylvania appellate court addressed it in … Continue Reading
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