Covenants Not To Compete

This case interpreted South Carolina law — different than North Carolina law — on the enforceability of a confidentiality agreement that the Defendant argued was overly broad.

The South Carolina precedent is Carolina Chemical Equipment Co. v. Muckenfuss, 471 S.E.2d 721 (S.C. 1996), where the South Carolina Supreme Court  held that a broad confidentiality

The North Carolina Business Court rejected a novel argument regarding the validity of post-employment consideration for a covenant not to compete.  It also dealt with the issue of the validity of a summons issued in the wrong name.

On the non-compete side, Plaintiff signed the non-compete with the cleaning company for which she had worked three years

The Court denied a Motion for a Temporary Restraining Order.  The Motion sought enforcement of covenants not to compete executed by the Defendants, who were loan officers with the Plaintiff, a mortgage broker.

The covenants stated that the Defendants:

will not directly or indirectly, in any capacity work for any company, entity or individual, including

Service of process can be made by leaving the Summons and Complaint at the Defendant’s residence, even though not in literal compliance with Rule 4, if the Defendant has evaded service.

The Defendant will waive an objection to service (and to jurisdiction) by filing a Notice of Designation to the North Carolina Business Court, because "the

The Court discussed the consideration element of a post-employment covenant not to compete, nothing that an increase in compensation or a job promotion can be sufficient consideration.

The Court held the non-compete at issue invalid for other reasons, however, involving its temporal and geographic scope. First, the Court held that the covenant prevented the defendant

Defendant had entered into a covenant not to compete with his employer, BBF. The assets of BBF, including its contract rights, were acquired by GDX. GDX then terminated defendant’s employment per the agreement, and hired him directly. There was no new non-compete agreement entered into directly between GDX and defendant. Years later, GDX filed for

Plaintiff’s former employee was subject to restrictive covenants in an Amended Employment Agreement. He was also subject, however, to what he claimed were conflicting restrictions in a subsequently executed Stock Purchase Agreement. The former employee asserted that the claims under the Amended Employment Agreement should be dismissed.

The Court denied the Motion and struck the

Plaintiff, the former employer of the defendant insurance broker, sued to enforce his amended employment agreement. Defendant moved to dismiss, claiming that the agreement had been superceded by an exit agreement, that a later stock purchase agreement had served as a novation of the employment agreement, and finally that the non-competition provisions in the employment