Hiring A Competitor’s Employees Can Create Exposure

Law360, New York (May 17, 2007, 12:00 AM EDT) -- Competitors are generally free to pursue the at-will employees of other companies, provided they avoid the misappropriation of trade secrets or other unlawful conduct. Applying California law, the Ninth Circuit in CRST Van Expedited Inc. v. Werner Enterprises Inc., 479 F.3d 1099 (2007), recently invoked a cautionary note to employers who recruit a competitor's employees that are under employment contracts.

If the employees have agreed to a specified term of employment, and those contracts are determined not to be for at-will employment, then liability for inducing...
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