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Non-Compete and Trade Secrets Blog

No Poach Agreements in the fast-food industry have garnered the attention of attorneys general in ten states and the District of Columbia. The development is the latest in a series of action at the state level giving restrictive covenants increased scrutiny. It adds to the enforcement efforts at the federal level by the U.S Department of Justice that has brought enforcement actions against several large U.S. companies and has a number of ongoing investigations

In a recent decision, the Northern District of Illinois touched on two key areas of employment law. The decision highlights the importance of sufficiently tailoring non-solicitation agreements, and implementing adequate measures to ensure trade secrets are maintained as confidential at all times

In a trade secrets matter, Magistrate Judge Jeffrey Cole of the Northern District of Illinois rejected Motorola’s attempt to compel the imaging of the computers of a number of Hytera employees. The decision is especially interesting with respect to the intersection between computer forensics and proportionality.

In the final installment of our three-part series, we highlight restrictive covenant reform legislation that is currently pending before the state legislatures.

Since October 2016 and the Call to Action by the White House, eight (8) states have enacted some type of restrictive covenant reform. This post discusses those efforts and provides an analysis of each new state law that we have seen.

State legislatures across the country have been active in recent years proposing and enacting legislation that impacts employers’ use of restrictive covenants. In a series of three posts, we will examine how this movement started, where it has gone, and where it is going.

Nondisclosure agreements are not enough to fully protect the value of a company’s proprietary information. The $30 million dollar jury verdict in BladeRoom v. Facebook, et al. is not inconsequential, to be sure, but it represents only ten percent of the recovery that BladeRoom was seeking against Facebook and Emerson Electric.

The recently proposed federal Employee Mobility Act of 2018 would effectively create a nationwide ban on non-compete agreements. Introduced in both the Senate and the House of Representatives, Senate Bill 2782/House Bill 5631 is the next step in a multi-year effort by a group of Senators and Representatives, and previously White House personnel under President Obama, who argue that employee non-competes (a) unduly inhibit employees’ economic opportunities, and (b) harm the economy by limiting employee mobility. This proposal comes as multiple state legislatures likewise have been considering and, in some cases, enacting legislation relating to employee restrictive covenants. 

Employers must fight the urge to utilize overbroad non-compete clauses with their high level employees. The Northern District of Illinois reminds employers of the consequences that can result from the use of such overbroad covenants.

In its recent suit against the Trump Campaign, Russia, and others, the Democratic National Committee alleges multiple trade secret claims. Can political campaigns have trade secrets?

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