Dim Future For Ill. Bright-Line Competition Restrictions

Law360, New York (February 17, 2015, 1:32 PM EST) -- On Feb. 6, 2015, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois in Chicago rejected the bright-line rule, created by an Illinois appellate court in the often maligned Fifield v. Premier Dealer Services Inc. decision, requiring that continued at-will employment last at least two years in order to constitute adequate consideration for the enforcement of competition restrictions. See Bankers Life and Casualty Co. v. Miller, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 14337 (N.D. Ill. Feb. 6, 2015) (Shah, J.). In rejecting the Fifield rule, the district court explained that given recent precedent emphasizing the need to consider the "totality of circumstances" in evaluating competition restrictions, the Illinois Supreme Court "would not adopt a bright-line rule requiring continued employment for at least two years in all cases." Id. at *11-12....

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