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Non-Compete Law

Blue Pencil Provisions in Virginia Contracts

Lawyers come up with some strange names for things. It’s true. We plead. We allege. We say things like Notwithstanding, and aforementioned. We like funny words.  One name I am constantly explaining to clients is the working definition of ‘blue pencil provision.’ In contracts, a blue pencil provision allows the court, as a third party,...[Read More]

Trade Secrets and Inevitable Disclosure: A Disturbing Trend

I am seeing a disturbing trend where an ex-employee, who never signed a non-compete agreement with his/her ex-employer, is faced with an attempt by the ex-employer to prevent the ex-employee from competing in the business world.  How?  By claiming the ex-employee is using “trade secrets” from the previous job to further their career with the...[Read More]

What does your Non-Compete really mean?

Imagine this: CALLER: “Dear attorney, my contract says I can sell Christmas trees within a 150 miles from my old Christmas tree stand. Does that mean 150 miles by road, or as the crow flies?” ATTORNEY: “Well, that depends. Does the contract specify? No? Then it means what the parties thought it meant when they...[Read More]

Emails: You might as well hand your ex-employer a gun!

We represent employees is disputes against employers.  The cases may involve alleged violations of non-compete contracts, breach of fiduciary duty, misappropriation of trade secrets, etc.  One of the first things we tell new clients is not to destroy or delete existing emails (whether on the employer’s server or the employee’s home or spouses’s computer).  The...[Read More]

New Doctors and Non-Compete Contracts

We review a lot of physician contracts which contain non-compete restrictions.  If the contract is offered to a “new” doctor just out of his/her residency or fellowship program, we always suggest to our clients that they give serious thought to the potential situation where they move their entire family to a new city, find the cost...[Read More]

Don’t order the steak – trust me.

I am big on trust. I am big on “going with your gut.” But I am also very big on open and clear communication.  If you went to a restaurant and told the waiter, “I love steak. Steak is my favorite, what is your best beef dish?” And the server replied, “Order the pork-chop,” you...[Read More]

Non-Compete Agreements, and the other team’s playbook

Our office typically represents employees in business litigation disputes. Yes, we occasionally represent a company but more often than not, we are fighting for an employee who wants to continue work in his or her chosen profession. We do this by evaluating their contracts, the situation and facts, and  arguing (when it is appropriate to...[Read More]