Employment & Non-Compete Litigation
Today’s workplace is governed by a multifaceted legal framework based on state and federal constitutions, legislation, judicial decisions, and administrative rules. Navigating employment law can be challenging, and employers often find themselves liable for hiring, promotion, and termination decisions. One key to a business’s success is successfully managing employment issues while protecting itself from legal liability. It is thus essential for employers to understand the legal implications of their workplace decisions.
The primary concept governing the employer-employee relationship in the United States is known as “employment-at-will”. Simply put, employment-at-will allows an employer to terminate an employee for any reason (or no reason at all), so long as the reason is not illegal. However, courts and legislatures have developed exceptions to the concept of employment-at-will. These exceptions are not always well-defined and can create real challenges for employers.
To compete in the modern business world, employers must protect their proprietary interests. Employees are often privy to these interests, including customer lists and trade secrets. To protect this information, employers may require employees to sign non-compete agreements, in which an employee agrees that, upon his or her departure from the company, he or she will not to compete against the employer during a specified period of time and in a specified geographic area. Because these agreements can restrict an employee’s ability to find work elsewhere, however, they are construed against the employer. Thus, a valid non-compete agreement must carefully balance these competing interests.
Barton Legal has experience representing both employees and employers in these types of disputes. Give us a call today.
- Lead counsel for the plaintiff in a large employment/quasi-shareholder dispute stemming from his termination defendants' refusal to transfer his equity interest in exchange for his consulting services. See Lesniak v. Buchberger et al., Case No. 2019-CV-000025 (Waukesha County Circuit Court).
- Obtained dismissal on the pleadings of a lawsuit brought by a corporate plaintiff against its former employee alleging violations of the Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, 18 U.S.C. §§ 1961 et seq., and other related torts following the employee’s departure from the company. See Centec, LLC v. Plutshack, Case No. 15-C-1401, 2016 WL 3645184 (E.D. Wis. June 30, 2016).
- Serve as outside general counsel for California-based medical device company and routinely advise on various employment-related issues.
- Regularly advise employees and employers regarding the enforceability of non-compete provisions in Wisconsin and other jurisdictions throughout the country.