Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner’s Non-Compete, Trade Secret and Employee Unfair Competition team provides a tremendous depth and geographic breadth of experience in disputes involving covenants not to compete, misappropriation of trade secrets, breach of confidentiality agreements, employee raiding, computer misconduct and other employee unfair competition issues.  Our trial lawyers are very experienced in providing advice relating to and handling the issues that frequently arise in noncompete, trade secret and similar disputes, including with respect to TROs, preliminary injunctions, expedited discovery, and computer-related discovery.  Our team has extensive research and resource materials on these and related topics, allowing our lawyers to advise clients on the proper drafting and scope of noncompetition covenants, identify and focus quickly on the key issues involved in analyzing noncompete, employee raiding, trade secret and similar disputes, and respond promptly when these disputes arise.

Key Facts & Figures

  • We have tremendous depth and experience in advising clients regarding, and handling, noncompete, trade secret, employee raiding, computer misconduct and similar matters and disputes in the United States, the United Kingdom, Europe and China. 
  • We use our experience to help clients avoid or minimize unnecessary and costly disputes.  On the front-end, we strive to prepare agreements that are reasonable, straight-forward and self-explanatory.  Having well-drafted agreements up-front often helps to avoid disputes on the back-end. 
  • Similarly, we try to provide practical advice by focusing on the legal and business realities involved.  There are times when it is necessary to be very aggressive; there are also times, however, when a different approach may be more appropriate.  Being overly aggressive, or moving too quickly, can lead to problems.   
  • We believe clients are better-served if they understand the issues, and the potential risks and benefits, before getting involved in lengthy and expensive litigation.  Although noncompete, trade secret and similar cases can be very difficult to predict in a number of respects, we try to provide an overview of what is likely to occur, as well as what could occur.  We also look for cost-effective resolutions that will protect our clients’ interests.

Representative Experience

Our team has represented:

  • A global manufacturer and provider of industrial automation, process controls, electronics and telecommunication products and services in a wide range of disputes, including relating to: 
    • Employee raiding; 
    • Misappropriation of trade secrets; and 
    • Noncompetition covenants. 
  • A leading, national department store retailer in several noncompete disputes against former high-level executives, including cases in which nationwide injunctive relief was granted. 
  • A national collections receivables company in litigation asserting trade secret and breach of the duty of loyalty claims against a former high-level executive. 
  • A global technology and manufacturing company engaged in the engineering, design and manufacture of customized thermal process systems in a noncompete dispute against its former Managing Director, Asia. 
  • A company specializing in providing placement services in a number of noncompete and related matters. 
  • An investment advisor business in two restrictive covenant cases filed against a total of five former employees. 
  • Obtaining an injunction in the High Court in London to enforce a garden leave claim to prevent an employee joining a competitor (now a leading precedent decision). 
  • Insurance brokerage firms in trade secret, noncompete and related disputes against former employees/brokers. 
  • An international sales motivation company in noncompete litigation against a former top salesman/producer. 
  • A multi-national packager in an arbitration proceeding in which the company was pursuing breach of contract claims and defending against unfair competition and trade secret claims.  Following a 17 day arbitration hearing, our client prevailed on its contract claim and all of the defendants’ counterclaims, and recovered compensatory damages as well as attorneys’ fees. 
  • A global consumer products company in providing strategic advice on the inclusion of confidentiality, non-compete and non-solicitation agreements and clauses at hire and at termination for employees in Asia and Latin America. 
  • Clients in providing strategic advice on the enforceability of restrictive covenants in connection with mass terminations affecting employees in major economies in Asia and Latin America. 
  • Numerous clients in preparing, reviewing and/or revising noncompete and similar agreements, including for employees in Missouri, Illinois, New York, North Carolina, Georgia, Michigan, and also in connection with a number of sale-of-business and other transactions throughout the United States, in Europe, the United Kingdom and Russia, as well as globally with the assistance of local resources in jurisdictions such as China, Hong Kong, South Korea, Japan, Singapore, India, Mexico and Brazil.