Non-Competes and Other Restrictive Covenants

The 8th Circuit’s recent decision in Symphony Diagnostic Servs. No. 1 v. Greenbaum, No. 15-2294, __ F.3d __ (8th Cir. July 6, 2016), upheld the enforceability of non-compete and confidentiality agreements assigned by Ozark Mobile Imaging to Mobilex as part of Mobilex’s purchase of Ozark’s assets.  Although the 8th Circuit is

Restrictive covenant agreements are traditionally governed by state law and thus subject to various jurisdictions’ rules regarding enforceability. They stand on a different footing than most other contracts, in that their enforcement is typically susceptible to a court’s equitable powers, and may not always be enforced as written, if at all. States differ on whether

The Florida Second District Court of Appeals’ recent decision in Fiberglass Coatings v. Interstate Chemical, Inc., Case No. 2DO8-1847 (Fla. 2d DCA, February 27, 2009), illustrates an interesting defense to a tortious interference claim. Absent evidence that the new employer induced the former employee to violate his non-compete agreement, merely hiring an employee whom the employer knows to be in violation of a non-compete agreement may not be sufficient to sustain a tortious interference claim under Florida law.
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Under Florida law, where an employment contract expires by its terms and the parties continue to perform as before, an implication arises that they have mutually assented to a new contract containing the same provisions as the old.
But this principle does not apply to non-competes and other restrictive covenants contained in employment contracts, as illustrated by a recent decision by the Third District Court of Appeal, Zupnik v. All Florida Paper, Inc., Case No. 3D08-1371 (Fla. 3d DCA, Dec. 31, 2008).
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A Florida trial court should not have entered a temporary injunction enforcing a non-compete agreement against a former employee on an ex parte basis, i.e., without notice to the employee, according to Florida’s Fourth District Court of Appeals in a recent decision, Bookall v. Sunbelt Rentals, Case No. 08-26291 (Fla. 4th DCA, December 3, 2008).
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