Trade Secret and Noncompete Litigation
Montgomery McCracken’s Trade Secret and Noncompete Litigation Practice represents employers and employees in disputes involving trade secrets, noncompete and nonsolicitation agreements, the employee duty of loyalty, and similar matters.
Our experience in advising our clients includes:
- Preparing agreements and other documents that allow employers to protect valuable information and customer relationships.
- Counseling employers on comprehensive steps, such as trade secret audits, toward the same goals.
- Counseling employers concerning responses to raiding by competitors, including litigation.
- Modification of personnel policies and compensation practices;
- Counseling employers on lawful and effective practices toward hiring the best workforce, including candidates from the competition.
- Counseling individuals planning job changes concerning effective techniques for maximizing value to the future employer, while avoiding litigation.
Examples of past representations by members of our Trade Secret and Noncompete Litigation Practice include:
- A MMWR client that provides assigned professionals to perform mission-critical services for its customers had a payment dispute with one of those customers. When negotiations over this payment dispute reached an impasse, the customer hired the assigned professional directly, eliminating the role of our client. We obtained an injunction in state court barring the assigned professional from performing any services for the customer, except as an employee of our client. The payment dispute and the full relationship between our client and its customer were soon resolved on terms favorable to our client.
- Our client received the resignations, without prior notice, of two key sales employees. Evidence strongly suggested pre-departure solicitation of clients and diversion of orders by the sales employees. We obtained injunctive relief and ultimately secured a $500,000 settlement.
- An out-of-state company bought a Pennsylvania corporation, and within a year of the completion of the sale, it learned that the selling shareholder had gone into competition with it, in violation of the noncompete provisions of the asset purchase agreement. We instituted a lawsuit in federal court seeking repayment of the purchase price of the business and injunctive relief and commenced expedited discovery. The matter was resolved within several weeks through a seven figure settlement.
- An out-of-state employer and employee were sued in federal court in Pennsylvania by the individual’s former employer, seeking enforcement of a noncompete agreement. All injunctive relief was denied after our team convinced the federal judge that because of a wrinkle in Pennsylvania law, the noncompete agreement lacked adequate consideration.
- Several employees planning to leave their employer and form their own business approached Montgomery McCracken for advice on a lawful transition. After careful planning and development of detailed defenses to any lawsuit, the employees resigned. Although the employer had a history of litigation against former employees and threatened litigation in this case, we were successful in convincing the former employer that any lawsuit would be resisted vigorously and effectively. The former employer elected not to pursue litigation.
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