• Wise counsel when moving between firms

    Law firm managers have long known they can’t require attorneys to sign noncompete agreements when they join a firm. Even so, there have still been instances where firms have made it challenging for a lawyer trying to make a lateral move. But a recent opinion from the American Bar Association Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility makes it clear that any provision of an employment agreement that interferes with a client’s autonomy is never acceptable.

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  • Are noncompetes overly broad?

    This year, a group of unions, employment law attorneys and other labor organizations petitioned the Federal Trade Commission to ban noncompete agreements. But while there are some instances where a restrictive covenant can be too restrictive, experts say there are also instances where noncompete clauses are legitimate.

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Articles

Guest column: Potential antitrust implications of noncompete agreements

Noncompete agreements generally are treated the same whether analyzed under state law or antitrust principles. However, limited instances exist in which antitrust laws may be more restrictive than state noncompete laws are. Businesses with high market shares in their geographic and product markets should take special caution to ensure their restrictive covenants do not unlawfully restrain competition.

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Hurley and Mappes: Noncompete agreements under attack: What to know and how to protect your trade secrets

Businesses routinely use noncompete agreements to protect their most valuable assets, including trade secrets. However, noncompete agreements are increasingly under attack at both the state and federal level. This two-part series will first explain recent developments restricting the use of noncompetes, then Part II will focus on how that increased scrutiny on noncompete agreements may impact trade secret protection.

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Macchia: Are noncompetes standing on shaky ground?

Over the last 18 months we have seen drastic changes in this country’s employment laws as a result of the pandemic, including new and updated laws and regulations related to sick leave, unemployment compensation and employee safety requirements. One change that has been mostly overshadowed by the ever-evolving nature of the pandemic, and its impact on the employment area, is a shift in the use and the enforceability of noncompetition agreements.

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Smith: Indiana Court of Appeals upholds employer’s noncompete

The Indiana Court of Appeals recently published a decision that is instructive about noncompete agreements. It is one of the rare noncompete cases that does not contain the phrase: “Indiana courts are reluctant to enforce noncompete agreements because they constitute a restraint on trade.”

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Firm can pursue damages in competitor’s recruitment of workers

An Indianapolis-based civil engineering firm will have the opportunity to defend its demand for liquidated damages from three employees who allegedly violated non-recruitment agreements after the Indiana Court of Appeals reversed summary judgment for the firm’s competitor. The court also upheld the denial of summary judgment to the competitor on two additional claims stemming from its alleged impermissible recruitment of employees.   

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