Losing a team can give rise to a significant loss of a profit centre and skill base for an employer. It can be demoralising for the remaining staff, jeopardise sensitive confidential information, create a risk of losing client connections and be damaging to an employer’s reputation. It is important to act quickly and strategically against a departing employee or team. There is usually a very fine line between team moves which are conducted lawfully and within the parameters of the employment contract and those which are conducted unlawfully. We have significant experience in advising employers in various sectors on protecting their business and reputation against poaching and all types of team moves.
Having tightly drafted restrictive covenants, confidentiality clauses, gardening leave and notice provisions in place is fundamental to protecting a business against competition by former employees. Restrictive covenants are notoriously difficult to draft; courts look very closely at the wording of the covenants and their impact on the departing individuals to ensure that they go no further than is reasonably necessary to protect a legitimate business interest. We have in-depth experience in drafting and advising on restrictive covenants of all types. We also have experience in advising employers if team move-related matters become contentious, see Business protection and unlawful competition.
How Fox & Partners can help…
- The best time to consider the drafting of restrictive covenants and other contractual provisions is before an employee commences their employment. However, it is also prudent to review covenants during the course of the employment, for example, at the same time as a salary review or bonus award. We draft tailored restrictive covenants, gardening leave and notice provisions or review and develop existing clauses to ensure they continue to be relevant to an individual as they become more senior.
- We can advise on the strategy to adopt and on the investigation that should be carried out in relation to a team move in order to protect confidential information, client connections and other business interests and to minimise disruption to the employer.
- We have in-depth experience in drafting and requesting appropriate undertakings from departing employees. Where necessary, we can assist with bringing proceedings to prohibit unlawful competitive activity by bringing unfair competition claims and making applications for injunctions against departing individuals.
Please call us on 020 7618 2400