Whelan Security attempted to instruct the two former employees on the basis of the agreements. The claim was rejected by the Court of First Instance, which issued a summary judgment in favour of the employees and found that the restrictions were too broad and inappropriate in terms of duration and geographical scope. The Missouri Court of Appeals overturned the case, but the case was referred to the Missouri Supreme Court. The Missouri House of Representatives is currently considering a bill that, if passed in its current form, would limit the ability of Missouri employers to enter into agreements so as not to compete with Missouri workers. Packed with incentives in HCS HB 1202 (aka.B. The Right to Start-Up Act), which is intended to encourage the creation of start-ups in Missouri, the proposed language with respect to non-compete obligations currently provides as follows: Since its enactment, the Copeland notice has played a leading role in enforcing the law with respect to non-compete obligations, a condition that seems stable for the foreseeable future. In Missouri, non-compete obligations are enforceable to the extent that they protect a legitimate business interest such as confidential information, trade secrets, and customer contact, and are appropriate in terms of time and geography. It`s important that customer contacts are only protectable for employees who can actually interact with customers and influence customer decisions. Whelan Security Co.c. Kennebrew, 379 P.W.3d 835 (Mo.
bench 2012). An associated restrictive agreement, the non-solicitation clause, which prevents employees from taking over their former colleagues, is considered enforceable for up to one year if its purpose is to protect company loyalty, customer goodwill and related interests. See MO. Rev. Stat. § 431.202. For more information on Missouri`s no-compete obligations, check out our blog posts Non-compete obligations in Missouri: The Missouri Supreme Court (once again) states everything as of December 2012 and sometimes you just can`t run from April 2020. Among other things, pursuant to the Copeland judgment, the Court held that “the absence of a geographical restriction in the present case renders the obligation of non-competition inapplicable, without being accompanied by a restriction specific to the category with which contact is restricted.
On the contrary, the non-compete clause creates a global ban in which Sigma attempted to prohibit employees from working in any capacity for one of its competitors worldwide. “Id. An employer could also require an employee to sign a non-compete obligation as a condition of maintaining the employment relationship or as a condition of promotion or granting of a new benefit. As this article shows, Missouri`s non-compete obligations are generally very restrictive, a fact that the employee usually does not realize until the employment relationship is terminated. If you need legal advice to draft or negotiate non-compete obligations, determine whether a non-compete obligation you have already signed is enforceable, or represent you in a dispute related to a non-compete obligation, contact the lawyers at Cosgrove Law Group, LLC. The general content of the PO is that the consolidation of large companies unfairly restricts competition. To date, the applicability of non-compete obligations has been almost entirely governed by state law, and state laws vary considerably on the subject. For example, California law is more hostile to these provisions, while the laws of Missouri, Illinois, and Kansas are more common, allowing for restrictions that are reasonably limited in scope and duration. While we have no idea what the FTC`s proposed settlement will look like, we can begin to guess by looking at the state`s laws on non-compete obligations in general. Both decisions provide employers with important lessons both in implementing anti-competitive agreements and in developing a process strategy. Employers must ensure that restrictive agreements comply with restrictions previously recognized by state law. For example, employers of Missouri employees should consider using the 50-mile restriction recognized in Whelan Security and applying the Missouri Supreme Court`s solicitation guidelines as well as the time limit set out in the Missouri Employee Non-Solicitation Act.
National employers should review their agreements from one State to another, as a single national agreement is unlikely to reach the limits recognized for all States. If you have any questions about the design of non-compete obligations, please contact Jackson Lewis` lawyer, with whom you work regularly. Illinois` common law is generally similar to Missouri`s in terms of non-compete obligations. However, in Illinois, non-compete obligations with “low-wage workers,” an employee earning the highest portion of the federal, state, or local minimum wage, or $13.00 per hour, are expressly prohibited by law. Illinois Freedom to Work Act, 820 ILCS 90/5. There is no reason for the PO to persuade companies to abandon non-compete obligations. .