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COA rules preliminary injunction wrongly extended noncompete agreement

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In reviewing a dispute over the terms of a noncompete agreement, the Indiana Court of Appeals reminded the trial court that a preliminary injunction has limits.

Even though the Court of Appeals affirmed the preliminary injunction against Robert Kuntz, it determined the trial court had erred when it extended the duration of the noncompete and awarded attorney fees.

Kuntz sold his business repairing electric auto parts and leased the company’s property to JS Hare Inc. in 2007. At that time, Kuntz entered into a noncompete agreement prohibiting him from doing similar work for the next seven and a half years.

In December 2011, JS Hare sold its assets to EVI, LLC. Several months later, after EVI became concerned that Kuntz was violating his noncompete, it filed suit and requested a preliminary injunction.

The Court of Appeals ruled in Robert Kuntz, Kunodu, Inc. and B-K Interests, LLC v. EVI, LLC, 02A03-1301-PL-14, that the trial court did not abuse its discretion in granting a preliminary injunction against Kuntz.

However, the COA pointed out the purpose of a preliminary injunction is to preserve the status quo until the court can issue a ruling on the dispute.

Therefore, since the last uncontested position of the parties was that the noncompete agreement expired in October 2014, the trial court should not have tacked on additional months. Also, since neither party had prevailed with a judgment or settlement that grants the relief sought, the lower court erred by awarding attorney fees to EVI.

 

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  1. Well, maybe it's because they are unelected, and, they have a tendency to strike down laws by elected officials from all over the country. When you have been taught that "Democracy" is something almost sacred, then, you will have a tendency to frown on such imperious conduct. Lawyers get acculturated in law school into thinking that this is the very essence of high minded government, but to people who are more heavily than King George ever did, they may not like it. Thanks for the information.

  2. I pd for a bankruptcy years ago with Mr Stiles and just this week received a garnishment from my pay! He never filed it even though he told me he would! Don't let this guy practice law ever again!!!

  3. Excellent initiative on the part of the AG. Thankfully someone takes action against predators taking advantage of people who have already been through the wringer. Well done!

  4. Conour will never turn these funds over to his defrauded clients. He tearfully told the court, and his daughters dutifully pledged in interviews, that his first priority is to repay every dime of the money he stole from his clients. Judge Young bought it, much to the chagrin of Conour’s victims. Why would Conour need the $2,262 anyway? Taxpayers are now supporting him, paying for his housing, utilities, food, healthcare, and clothing. If Conour puts the money anywhere but in the restitution fund, he’s proved, once again, what a con artist he continues to be and that he has never had any intention of repaying his clients. Judge Young will be proven wrong... again; Conour has no remorse and the Judge is one of the many conned.

  5. Pass Legislation to require guilty defendants to pay for the costs of lab work, etc as part of court costs...

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