Category: Texas Legal News

Top 5 Non-Compete Cases in Texas in 2017

Texas courts have issued several interesting opinions in 2017 regarding Texas non-compete law, explaining and defining when the Texas Covenants not to Compete Act applies and clarifying procedural mechanisms and remedies in non-compete disputes.

The Fifth Circuit Rules that Federal Law Preempts Unfair Competition Claim Under Texas Law

The Fifth Circuit recently considered whether the federal copyright and patent laws preempt (trump) Texas common law claim of unfair competition by misappropriation.

A Famous Dallas Chef Defeats an Injunction Based on “Unclean Hands” Defense, Can Now Use His Name

The unclean hands defense “allows a court to decline to grant equitable relief, such as an injunction, to a party whose conduct in connection with the same matter or transaction has been unconscientious, unjust, or marked by a want of good faith, or one who has violated the principles of equity and righteous dealing.”

Buc-ee’s Repayment Provision in the Employment Agreement Is Declared Unlawful, Likened to Indentured Servitude

In Texas, covenants limiting employees’ professional mobility are unlawful restraints on trade unless they fall within the exception created by the Covenants not to Compete Act.

Can an employer require employees to repay training costs in Texas?

Generally, training repayment provisions in employment agreements are enforceable in Texas.  Employers should make sure that such clauses are written in a clear and understandable manner and are not hidden within employment contracts.   When determining the parameters of the reimbursement policies, companies should make sure that they comply with the Texas Texas Free Enterprise and Antitrust Act of 1983, which prohibits the restraint on trade.

2017 Welcomes Changes in Non-Compete Laws

This year, California, Illinois and Nevada amended their non-compete statutes to help protect employees’ right to change employers. Idaho, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, and Washington considered various amendments, but were unsuccessful in signing them into law, which means they will probably try again in 2018.   

Can an Employee Prepare to Compete with His Employer While Still on the Employer’s Payroll?

In Texas, employees have the right to resign from employment and go into business in competition with their employers (absent a non-compete agreement). There is nothing legally wrong in engaging in such competition or in preparing to compete before the employment terminates. Thus, as…

Texas Statute Prohibits Firing and Discrimination Against Employees Who Evacuate

Texas employers may not discharge or otherwise discriminate against an employee who “leaves the employee’s place of employment to participate in a general public evacuation ordered under an emergency evacuation order.” Tex. Labor Code § 22.002. An emergency evacuation order means an official statement…

When Stopping Competition with A Temporary Injunction, It Pays To Be Precise

A lot of times a company rushes to court asking the judge to stop a former employee or his new employer from using the company’s confidential information or soliciting its customers based on the agreements that the former employee had signed with the company.    

Renewing Non-Disclosure Agreements with Employees? Consider this . . .

In my practice, I see this scenario all the time: an employee leaves to work for a competitor, the employer realizes that its non-disclosure (NDA) or non-compete agreement was inadequate to protect it from what just happened, so the company rolls out a new…