Stephen Riden Featured in The National Law Journal on Noncompetes

A recent issue of The National Law Journal features discussion with Steve Riden in an article titled “Legal Industry Is Split on FTC’s Proposed Ban on Non-Competes.”

The article covers the Federal Trade Commission’s proposed Noncompete Clause Rule, which would essentially ban all employee noncompete agreements. The report was written by Christine Schiffner, Bureau Chief for the National Law Journal in Washington, D.C.

In the article, attorneys discuss a variety of viewpoints about the value of noncompete agreements, and assess the FTC’s proposal to restrict such provisions. Steve Riden is quoted as follows:

“We would suggest that the FTC reconsider an outright ban of non-compete agreements,” said Boston-based Beck Reed & Riden partner Stephen Riden. He and the firm’s other name partner Russell Beck spearheaded the publication of an open letter signed by 59 attorneys underscoring the effectiveness of non-compete agreements to protect trade secrets and “stealing confidential company information” when employees leave their jobs. His firm is also planning to actively weigh in during the FTC’s public comment period.

***

While 47 U.S. states currently permit non-competes and three states have enacted bans, Riden points out that “there are measures that can be taken to soften the impacts of non-competes,” including clear disclosures and more transparency during the hiring process. “Companies could provide notice of the non-compete agreements before the employee accepts the job,” Riden said—“so employees start a new role with their eyes wide open.”

***

While the FTC argues that the new rule would promote “greater dynamism, healthy competition, and innovation,” defense attorneys disagree. Particularly in circumstances of employees handling confidential or even trade secret information, non-compete clauses “give the old employer the opportunity to protect and further capitalize on the confidential information,” Riden said.

Steve has substantial experience representing companies and individuals in trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition matters.

eck Reed Riden LLP is among the leading authorities in trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition law, and our experience handling these matters is backed by our extensive employment law and business litigation experience. Our hand-picked team combines attorneys with complementary expertise and practical experience.

The Wall Street Journal featured Beck Reed Riden LLP’s noncompete agreement experience. In 2016, the White House issued a report entitled, “Non-Compete Agreements: Analysis of the Usage, Potential Issues, and State Responses,” relying in part on Beck Reed Riden LLP’s research and analysis, including its 50 State Noncompete Survey.

Beck Reed Riden LLP is Boston’s innovative litigation boutique. Our lawyers have years of experience working with clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups and individuals. We focus on business litigation and employment.

We are experienced litigators and counselors, helping our clients as business partners to resolve issues and develop strategies that best meet our clients’ legal and business needs – before, during, and after litigation. We’re ready to roll up our sleeves and help you. Read more about us, the types of matters we handle, and what we can do for you here.

Russell Beck to Speak on Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly Panel About Proposed Noncompete Ban

Russell Beck will appear on a panel assembled by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly titled “FTC Proposes Nationwide Ban on Non-Competes.”

The seminar will focus on the Federal Trade Commission’s proposed Noncompete Clause Rule, which would essentially ban all employee noncompete agreements. The free event will be held on Monday, January 30, 2023, at 2:00 p.m. ET on Zoom. More information and registration is available here.

Anyone who is unable to attend the live session should still register, as Lawyers Weekly will send a recording and the slides after the presentation.

Panelists will discuss the current landscape, what the rule says, what the impact will be on employers, what the timeline might be for implementation, the implications for non-disclosure agreements and other restrictive covenants, what alternatives the FTC might consider, and what businesses can do.

or up-to-the-minute analysis of legal issues concerning trade secrets and non-compete agreements in Massachusetts and across the United States, read Russell Beck’s blog, Fair Competition Law.

Russell frequently writes and speaks about current efforts to regulate noncompete agreements. He was featured on NPR and quoted in the New York Times discussing federal regulatory efforts targeting noncompete agreements. In January 2023, Russell was quoted in a Bloomberg Law article about the FTC’s proposed rule, and he wrote an article for Law360 called “Companies Must Brace For FTC’s Overbroad Noncompete Rule.” In April 2020, Russell Beck and Erika Hahn’s article about the FTC’s investigation about whether it should regulate noncompetes was published by Law360. In July 2019, Law360 published Russell Beck’s analysis of misconceptions in the noncompete debate.

eck Reed Riden LLP is among the leading authorities in trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition law, and our experience handling these matters is backed by our extensive employment law and business litigation experience. Our hand-picked team combines attorneys with complementary expertise and practical experience.

The Wall Street Journal featured Beck Reed Riden LLP’s noncompete agreement experience. In 2016, the White House issued a report entitled, “Non-Compete Agreements: Analysis of the Usage, Potential Issues, and State Responses,” relying in part on Beck Reed Riden LLP’s research and analysis, including its 50 State Noncompete Survey.

Russell Beck’s work in this area is well recognized, and includes:

  • Over thirty years of experience working on trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition matters
  • Assisting the Obama White House as part of a small working group to develop President Obama’s Noncompete Call to Action
  • Authoring the book Negotiating, Drafting, and Enforcing Noncompetition Agreements and Related Restrictive Covenants (6th ed., MCLE, Inc. 2021), used by other lawyers to help them with their noncompete matters
  • Authoring the book Trade Secrets Law for the Massachusetts Practitioner (1st ed. MCLE 2019), covering trade secrets nationally, with a focus on Massachusetts law
  • Drafting and advising on legislation for the Massachusetts Legislature to define, codify, and improve noncompetition law
  • Teaching Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenants at Boston University School of Law
  • Founding and administering the award-winning blog, Fair Competition Law
  • Establishing and administering the Noncompete Lawyers and Trade Secret Protection groups on LinkedIn, with over 1,660 and 870 members, respectively, around the world
  • Founded and chaired the Trade Secret / Noncompete Practice for an AmLaw 100 firm

In addition, Russell was honored for his work in this area of law in the 2020 Chambers USA Guide, which stated that Russell Beck is “an expert in the field of trade secret and restrictive covenant law,” and is also noted for his “ability to adjust and come up with successful solutions.” Chambers noted that Russell “basically wrote the new Massachusetts statute on noncompetes” and that “he’s an expert in employee mobility and nonrestrictive covenants.”

Beck Reed Riden LLP is Boston’s innovative litigation boutique. Our lawyers have years of experience working with clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups and individuals. We focus on business litigation and employment.

We are experienced litigators and counselors, helping our clients as business partners to resolve issues and develop strategies that best meet our clients’ legal and business needs – before, during, and after litigation. We’re ready to roll up our sleeves and help you. Read more about us, the types of matters we handle, and what we can do for you here.

Russell Beck to Speak at MCLE About Proposed Noncompete Ban

Russell Beck will be speaking at the Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education’s seminar on the Federal Trade Commission’s proposed Noncompete Clause Rule, which would essentially ban all employee noncompete agreements.

The presentation, titled “FTC’s Proposed Rule Banning Noncompetes,” will take place online on January 25, 2023, from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. ET.

Registration and additional information for the MCLE program can be found here.

According to the description of the program, “[o]n January 5, 2023, the Federal Trade Commission announced a groundbreaking proposed rule, which would ban employee noncompetes. The proposed rule, if enacted, will completely change the landscape on restrictive covenants and trade secret protection. Not only would employers be unable to use or enforce noncompetes, they would be required to take steps to rescind existing noncompetes and notify employees that they are no longer enforceable. The proposed rule, which President Biden urged the FTC to adopt, purports to preempt all state law on noncompetes, including centuries of case law and significant recent state legislative efforts.”

MCLE describes the target audience for this program as follows:

Employers and employees need to be aware of and begin to plan for the possible adoption of the proposed rule (or a revised version thereof). Interested parties should also take advantage of the 60-day period to comment to the FTC on the proposed rule. This fast-track program is designed to assist lawyers in advising their clients in planning for compliance.

Russell frequently writes and speaks about current efforts to regulate noncompete agreements. He was featured on NPR and quoted in the New York Times discussing federal regulatory efforts targeting noncompete agreements. In January 2023, Russell was quoted in a Bloomberg Law article about the FTC’s proposed rule, and he wrote an article for Law360 called “Companies Must Brace For FTC’s Overbroad Noncompete Rule.” In April 2020, Russell Beck and Erika Hahn’s article about the FTC’s investigation about whether it should regulate noncompetes was published by Law360. In July 2019, Law360 published Russell Beck’s analysis of misconceptions in the noncompete debate.

_____

For up-to-the-minute analysis of legal issues concerning trade secrets and noncompete agreements in Massachusetts and across the United States, read Russell Beck’s blog, Fair Competition Law.

eck Reed Riden LLP is among the leading authorities in trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition law, and our experience handling these matters is backed by our extensive employment law and business litigation experience. Our hand-picked team combines attorneys with complementary expertise and practical experience.

The Wall Street Journal featured Beck Reed Riden LLP’s noncompete agreement experience. In 2016, the White House issued a report entitled, “Non-Compete Agreements: Analysis of the Usage, Potential Issues, and State Responses,” relying in part on Beck Reed Riden LLP’s research and analysis, including its 50 State Noncompete Survey.

Russell Beck’s work in this area is well recognized, and includes:

  • Over thirty years of experience working on trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition matters
  • Assisting the Obama White House as part of a small working group to develop President Obama’s Noncompete Call to Action
  • Authoring the book Negotiating, Drafting, and Enforcing Noncompetition Agreements and Related Restrictive Covenants (6th ed., MCLE, Inc. 2021), used by other lawyers to help them with their noncompete matters
  • Authoring the book Trade Secrets Law for the Massachusetts Practitioner (1st ed. MCLE 2019), covering trade secrets nationally, with a focus on Massachusetts law
  • Drafting and advising on legislation for the Massachusetts Legislature to define, codify, and improve noncompetition law
  • Teaching Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenants at Boston University School of Law
  • Founding and administering the award-winning blog, Fair Competition Law
  • Establishing and administering the Noncompete Lawyers and Trade Secret Protection groups on LinkedIn, with over 1,660 and 870 members, respectively, around the world
  • Founded and chaired the Trade Secret / Noncompete Practice for an AmLaw 100 firm

In addition, Russell was honored for his work in this area of law in the 2020 Chambers USA Guide, which stated that Russell Beck is “an expert in the field of trade secret and restrictive covenant law,” and is also noted for his “ability to adjust and come up with successful solutions.” Chambers noted that Russell “basically wrote the new Massachusetts statute on noncompetes” and that “he’s an expert in employee mobility and nonrestrictive covenants.”

Beck Reed Riden LLP is Boston’s innovative litigation boutique. Our lawyers have years of experience working with clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups and individuals. We focus on business litigation and employment.

We are experienced litigators and counselors, helping our clients as business partners to resolve issues and develop strategies that best meet our clients’ legal and business needs – before, during, and after litigation. We’re ready to roll up our sleeves and help you. Read more about us, the types of matters we handle, and what we can do for you here.

Russell Beck Featured in Bloomberg Law on Noncompete Agreements

Russell Beck was quoted in a Bloomberg Law article about the FTC’s proposal to ban noncompete agreements.

The story is titled “FTC’s Noncompete Ban Mirrors State Proposals Before Scaling Back.” The January 9, 2023, article was written by Chris Marr, who writes about labor & employment news for Bloomberg Law.

The article discusses the proposed rule recently issued by the Federal Trade Commission that would essentially ban noncompete agreements.

The article quotes Russell as follows:

“I expect that the FTC will pare back the proposed rule to make it address the abuses,” which include “using them for low-wage workers, using overly-broad noncompetes, and disclosing the requirement of a noncompete the day the employee shows up for work,” said Russell Beck, an employment lawyer with Beck Reed Riden LLP in Boston.

The FTC rule is widely expected to face legal challenges, as many lawyers and business interests such as the US Chamber of Commerce question whether Congress delegated such broad rulemaking authority to the commission.

“Even though the FTC likely doesn’t have authority to issue any rule on employee noncompetes outside of mergers, I think if they create a narrow rule, it will be far less likely to be challenged,” Beck said.

____

Russell frequently writes about current efforts to regulate noncompete agreements. He was featured on NPR and quoted in the New York Times discussing federal regulatory efforts targeting noncompete agreements. In January 2023, Russell wrote an article for Law360 called “Companies Must Brace For FTC’s Overbroad Noncompete Rule.” In April 2020, Russell Beck and Erika Hahn’s article about the FTC’s investigation about whether it should regulate noncompetes was published by Law360. In July 2019, Law360 published Russell Beck’s analysis of misconceptions in the noncompete debate.

For up-to-the-minute analysis of legal issues concerning trade secrets and noncompete agreements in Massachusetts and across the United States, read Russell Beck’s blog, Fair Competition Law.

eck Reed Riden LLP is among the leading authorities in trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition law, and our experience handling these matters is backed by our extensive employment law and business litigation experience. Our hand-picked team combines attorneys with complementary expertise and practical experience.

The Wall Street Journal featured Beck Reed Riden LLP’s noncompete agreement experience. In 2016, the White House issued a report entitled, “Non-Compete Agreements: Analysis of the Usage, Potential Issues, and State Responses,” relying in part on Beck Reed Riden LLP’s research and analysis, including its 50 State Noncompete Survey.

Russell Beck’s work in this area is well recognized, and includes:

  • Over thirty years of experience working on trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition matters
  • Assisting the Obama White House as part of a small working group to develop President Obama’s Noncompete Call to Action
  • Authoring the book Negotiating, Drafting, and Enforcing Noncompetition Agreements and Related Restrictive Covenants (6th ed., MCLE, Inc. 2021), used by other lawyers to help them with their noncompete matters
  • Authoring the book Trade Secrets Law for the Massachusetts Practitioner (1st ed. MCLE 2019), covering trade secrets nationally, with a focus on Massachusetts law
  • Drafting and advising on legislation for the Massachusetts Legislature to define, codify, and improve noncompetition law
  • Teaching Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenants at Boston University School of Law
  • Founding and administering the award-winning blog, Fair Competition Law
  • Establishing and administering the Noncompete Lawyers and Trade Secret Protection groups on LinkedIn, with over 1,660 and 870 members, respectively, around the world
  • Founded and chaired the Trade Secret / Noncompete Practice for an AmLaw 100 firm

In addition, Russell was honored for his work in this area of law in the 2020 Chambers USA Guide, which stated that Russell Beck is “an expert in the field of trade secret and restrictive covenant law,” and is also noted for his “ability to adjust and come up with successful solutions.” Chambers noted that Russell “basically wrote the new Massachusetts statute on noncompetes” and that “he’s an expert in employee mobility and nonrestrictive covenants.”

Beck Reed Riden LLP is Boston’s innovative litigation boutique. Our lawyers have years of experience working with clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups and individuals. We focus on business litigation and employment.

We are experienced litigators and counselors, helping our clients as business partners to resolve issues and develop strategies that best meet our clients’ legal and business needs – before, during, and after litigation. We’re ready to roll up our sleeves and help you. Read more about us, the types of matters we handle, and what we can do for you here.

Russell Beck Publishes Article on Proposed Noncompete Ban

Russell Beck‘s article about the Federal Trade Commission’s proposal to essentially ban noncompete agreements was published by Law360 under the title, “Companies Must Brace For FTC’s Overbroad Noncompete Rule.”

The FTC’s proposed rule follows President Biden’s Executive Order on noncompete agreements

In the article, Russell reports that:

On Jan. 5, the FTC proposed a rule called the Noncompete Clause Rule, which would essentially ban all employee noncompetes, as well as any other restrictive covenant — including nondisclosure agreements — that can be interpreted by the FTC as a de facto noncompete.

The proposed rule would bar new noncompete agreements, and retroactively invalidate all existing noncompetes

ussell observes that the FTC’s

throw-the-baby-out-with-the-bathwater approach is a mistake. While a bright-line rule provides clarity and certainty, the unintended consequences are likely to be extreme and can potentially dwarf the benefits of a complete ban.

For example, the rule would almost certainly result in more trade secrets being unlawfully taken to a competitor. The theft of trade secrets is already estimated to cost the economy hundreds of billions of dollars a year and was a principle driver of the 2016 enactment of the Defend Trade Secrets Act.

Given the FTC’s move to ban noncompete agreements, Russell says the time to act is now:

Immediate action is required.

First, become part of the discussion. The FTC has requested public comment on virtually everything in its 218-page notice. Whether you use noncompetes or oppose their use, if you have something useful to add to the discussion, add it. This is the time to voice your opinion before it’s too late. But I encourage an honest debate with supportable facts and argument, not rhetoric and hyperbole.

This has been a four-plus year process that is crescendoing now. This will be the last chance for companies and individuals to provide input. If you have any, provide it. And do it now. You have 60 days from the date the notice is published in the Federal Register. While the FTC is almost certainly going to promulgate a rule, it has signaled a willingness to consider shifting to a more balanced approach.

In addition to the suggestion to give comments to the FTC, Russell also suggests that companies should stop using noncompete agreements for low-wage workers.

Russell concludes that

The FTC’s proposed rule needs to be a wake-up call. Companies need to immediately take steps to provide their input to the FTC and, simultaneously, brace for its impact — which may be far from certain for many months to come.

_____

For up-to-the-minute analysis of legal issues concerning trade secrets and noncompete agreements in Massachusetts and across the United States, read Russell Beck’s blog, Fair Competition Law.

eck Reed Riden LLP is among the leading authorities in trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition law, and our experience handling these matters is backed by our extensive employment law and business litigation experience. Our hand-picked team combines attorneys with complementary expertise and practical experience.

The Wall Street Journal featured Beck Reed Riden LLP’s noncompete agreement experience. In 2016, the White House issued a report entitled, “Non-Compete Agreements: Analysis of the Usage, Potential Issues, and State Responses,” relying in part on Beck Reed Riden LLP’s research and analysis, including its 50 State Noncompete Survey.

Russell Beck’s work in this area is well recognized, and includes:

  • Over thirty years of experience working on trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition matters
  • Assisting the Obama White House as part of a small working group to develop President Obama’s Noncompete Call to Action
  • Authoring the book Negotiating, Drafting, and Enforcing Noncompetition Agreements and Related Restrictive Covenants (6th ed., MCLE, Inc. 2021), used by other lawyers to help them with their noncompete matters
  • Authoring the book Trade Secrets Law for the Massachusetts Practitioner (1st ed. MCLE 2019), covering trade secrets nationally, with a focus on Massachusetts law
  • Drafting and advising on legislation for the Massachusetts Legislature to define, codify, and improve noncompetition law
  • Teaching Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenants at Boston University School of Law
  • Founding and administering the award-winning blog, Fair Competition Law
  • Establishing and administering the Noncompete Lawyers and Trade Secret Protection groups on LinkedIn, with over 1,660 and 870 members, respectively, around the world
  • Founded and chaired the Trade Secret / Noncompete Practice for an AmLaw 100 firm

In addition, Russell was honored for his work in this area of law in the 2020 Chambers USA Guide, which stated that Russell Beck is “an expert in the field of trade secret and restrictive covenant law,” and is also noted for his “ability to adjust and come up with successful solutions.” Chambers noted that Russell “basically wrote the new Massachusetts statute on noncompetes” and that “he’s an expert in employee mobility and nonrestrictive covenants.”

Beck Reed Riden LLP is Boston’s innovative litigation boutique. Our lawyers have years of experience working with clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups and individuals. We focus on business litigation and employment.

We are experienced litigators and counselors, helping our clients as business partners to resolve issues and develop strategies that best meet our clients’ legal and business needs – before, during, and after litigation. We’re ready to roll up our sleeves and help you. Read more about us, the types of matters we handle, and what we can do for you here.

Russell Beck to Lead Panel for New York City Bar on Noncompete Regulation

New York City BarOn December 13, 2022, Russell Beck will be a panel leader at the New York City Bar Association’s symposium titled “Navigating the Law of Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenants.” Russell’s panel is “What happens if the Federal Government Restricts Restrictive Covenants?

The New York City Bar describes the symposium as follow:

This two-day program, focusing on trade secret law, will examine some of an organization’s most valuable assets, from cutting edge technologies to profit-enhancing improvements and beyond.

The first half-day session will cover the fundamentals of trade secret law and the laws governing the creation, identification, and protection of trade secrets – including the drafting of agreements governing trade secret use and remedies for misappropriation.

The second half-day session will be a more in depth analysis of trade secrets litigation, mega-verdicts, and recent federal enforcement of restrictive covenant agreements deemed to be violations of the antitrust laws. The panels will include esteemed judges, in-house counsel, representatives from government agencies and top practitioners examining both the plaintiff and defense-side of the law. IP lawyers, employment lawyers, general counsel and executives should attend.

Russell’s panel will focus on the effects of a federal initiative to restrict noncompete agreements. On July 9, 2021, President Biden signed the sweeping Executive Order on Promoting Competition in the American Economy, which, among other initiatives, “encouraged” the FTC to use its statutory rulemaking authority “to curtail the unfair use of non-compete clauses and other clauses or agreements that may unfairly limit worker mobility.” While efforts to curtail the use of noncompetes are not new, this latest executive action could signal increased momentum towards nationwide restrictions banning or restricting the use of noncompetes for workers in a wide range of industries.

The panelists are:

  • John P. Barry of Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP
  • Benjamin I. Fink of Berman Fink Van Horn. P.C.
  • Rosa M. Morales of Crowell & Moring LLP

A full program for the presentation is available here.

____

For up-to-the-minute analysis of legal issues concerning trade secrets and noncompete agreements in Massachusetts and across the United States, read Russell Beck’s blog, Fair Competition Law.

eck Reed Riden LLP is among the leading authorities in trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition law, and our experience handling these matters is backed by our extensive employment law and business litigation experience. Our hand-picked team combines attorneys with complementary expertise and practical experience.

The Wall Street Journal featured Beck Reed Riden LLP’s noncompete agreement experience. In 2016, the White House issued a report entitled, “Non-Compete Agreements: Analysis of the Usage, Potential Issues, and State Responses,” relying in part on Beck Reed Riden LLP’s research and analysis, including its 50 State Noncompete Survey.

Russell Beck’s work in this area is well recognized, and includes:

  • Over thirty years of experience working on trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition matters
  • Assisting the Obama White House as part of a small working group to develop President Obama’s Noncompete Call to Action
  • Authoring the book Negotiating, Drafting, and Enforcing Noncompetition Agreements and Related Restrictive Covenants (6th ed., MCLE, Inc. 2021), used by other lawyers to help them with their noncompete matters
  • Authoring the book Trade Secrets Law for the Massachusetts Practitioner (1st ed. MCLE 2019), covering trade secrets nationally, with a focus on Massachusetts law
  • Drafting and advising on legislation for the Massachusetts Legislature to define, codify, and improve noncompetition law
  • Teaching Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenants at Boston University School of Law
  • Founding and administering the award-winning blog, Fair Competition Law
  • Establishing and administering the Noncompete Lawyers and Trade Secret Protection groups on LinkedIn, with over 1,660 and 870 members, respectively, around the world
  • Founded and chaired the Trade Secret / Noncompete Practice for an AmLaw 100 firm

In addition, Russell was honored for his work in this area of law in the 2020 Chambers USA Guide, which stated that Russell Beck is “an expert in the field of trade secret and restrictive covenant law,” and is also noted for his “ability to adjust and come up with successful solutions.” Chambers noted that Russell “basically wrote the new Massachusetts statute on noncompetes” and that “he’s an expert in employee mobility and nonrestrictive covenants.”

Beck Reed Riden LLP is Boston’s innovative litigation boutique. Our lawyers have years of experience working with clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups and individuals. We focus on business litigation and employment.

We are experienced litigators and counselors, helping our clients as business partners to resolve issues and develop strategies that best meet our clients’ legal and business needs – before, during, and after litigation. We’re ready to roll up our sleeves and help you. Read more about us, the types of matters we handle, and what we can do for you here.

Russell Beck Speaks at Strafford Seminar on Noncompete Regulation

On October 26, 2022, Russell Beck was a panelist for a Strafford seminar titled “Restrictions on Noncompetes: Recent FTC Developments on Wage and Hour Workers”

The presentation, a recording of which is now available online, is described as follows:

On July 9, 2021, President Biden signed the sweeping Executive Order on Promoting Competition in the American Economy, which, among other initiatives, “encouraged” the FTC to use its statutory rulemaking authority “to curtail the unfair use of non-compete clauses and other clauses or agreements that may unfairly limit worker mobility.” While efforts to curtail the use of noncompetes are not new, this latest executive action could signal increased momentum towards nationwide restrictions banning or restricting the use of noncompetes for workers in a wide range of industries.

he White House’s explanatory fact sheet clarifies that “the President encourages the FTC to ban or limit non-compete agreements.” A nationwide rule regarding noncompetes would be an unprecedented move by the federal government.

Previously, the states regulated noncompete agreements. Many–including Illinois, Nevada, and Oregon–have passed legislation limiting the enforcement of noncompetes by setting minimum compensation levels and time limits on the period of restriction. The Executive Order and accompanying fact sheet do not offer details on whether these are the types of limitations the FTC should consider.

Still, they represent common compromises that are short of an outright ban on noncompetes. In addition to President Biden’s Executive Order, the Illinois legislature passed new noncompete legislation in late May 2021. The new law will have significant changes for agreements and litigation in Illinois.

Although the FTC’s administrative rulemaking process regarding noncompete agreements has not yet been initiated, employers should immediately consider reviewing their workers’ noncompete agreements and employment policies for compliance with state law and with consideration of future possible federal action limiting the enforceability of such agreements.

The panelists discussed the following topics:

  1. History of noncompete regulation
  2. Biden Executive Order
  3. FTC possible regulations
  4. Future of noncompete beyond low-wage workers
  5. Best practices for employers in the future seeking to limit unfair competition and protect their businesses

A full program for the presentation is available here.

____

For up-to-the-minute analysis of legal issues concerning trade secrets and noncompete agreements in Massachusetts and across the United States, read Russell Beck’s blog, Fair Competition Law.

eck Reed Riden LLP is among the leading authorities in trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition law, and our experience handling these matters is backed by our extensive employment law and business litigation experience. Our hand-picked team combines attorneys with complementary expertise and practical experience.

The Wall Street Journal featured Beck Reed Riden LLP’s noncompete agreement experience. In 2016, the White House issued a report entitled, “Non-Compete Agreements: Analysis of the Usage, Potential Issues, and State Responses,” relying in part on Beck Reed Riden LLP’s research and analysis, including its 50 State Noncompete Survey.

Russell Beck’s work in this area is well recognized, and includes:

  • Over thirty years of experience working on trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition matters
  • Assisting the Obama White House as part of a small working group to develop President Obama’s Noncompete Call to Action
  • Authoring the book Negotiating, Drafting, and Enforcing Noncompetition Agreements and Related Restrictive Covenants (6th ed., MCLE, Inc. 2021), used by other lawyers to help them with their noncompete matters
  • Authoring the book Trade Secrets Law for the Massachusetts Practitioner (1st ed. MCLE 2019), covering trade secrets nationally, with a focus on Massachusetts law
  • Drafting and advising on legislation for the Massachusetts Legislature to define, codify, and improve noncompetition law
  • Teaching Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenants at Boston University School of Law
  • Founding and administering the award-winning blog, Fair Competition Law
  • Establishing and administering the Noncompete Lawyers and Trade Secret Protection groups on LinkedIn, with over 1,660 and 870 members, respectively, around the world
  • Founded and chaired the Trade Secret / Noncompete Practice for an AmLaw 100 firm

In addition, Russell was honored for his work in this area of law in the 2020 Chambers USA Guide, which stated that Russell Beck is “an expert in the field of trade secret and restrictive covenant law,” and is also noted for his “ability to adjust and come up with successful solutions.” Chambers noted that Russell “basically wrote the new Massachusetts statute on noncompetes” and that “he’s an expert in employee mobility and nonrestrictive covenants.”

Beck Reed Riden LLP is Boston’s innovative litigation boutique. Our lawyers have years of experience working with clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups and individuals. We focus on business litigation and employment.

We are experienced litigators and counselors, helping our clients as business partners to resolve issues and develop strategies that best meet our clients’ legal and business needs – before, during, and after litigation. We’re ready to roll up our sleeves and help you. Read more about us, the types of matters we handle, and what we can do for you here.

Russell Beck to Chair Noncompete and Restrictive Covenants Conference

Russell Beck will be serving as the chairperson of Practising Law Institute’s full-day program on noncompete agreements.

The program, which will be held in New York City, is titled “Noncompetes and Restrictive Covenants 2022: What Every Lawyer, Human Resources Professional, and Key Strategic Decisionmaker Should Know.”

The conference starts at 9 a.m. ET on September 29, 2022. Russell will be giving the opening remarks. More information and registration is available here.

This conference is “a unique full-day program, offering an in-depth look at noncompete laws nationally.”

Throughout the day, experts in the field of employee restrictive covenant agreements will be giving informative presentations. The program is described as follows:

Noncompete agreements and similar restrictive covenants help companies protect their trade secrets, customer relationships, and other recognized legitimate business interests. But, noncompete laws vary state by state, ranging from bans in California, Oklahoma, and North Dakota, to strong, pro-enforcement policies in Florida. And, while public opinion, evolving state legislation, emerging federal regulation, and trends in judicial review and enforcement are moving toward greater restrictions on the use of these agreements, the risks posed by employees who are not subject to restrictive covenants is increasing.

Understanding the changing landscape and its complications and implications is nothing short of critical – particularly for companies engaged in business across state lines.

Bringing together experts and thought leaders from around the country, the program starts with a level-setting of basic noncompete law, and then delves into nuanced and advanced issues from the perspectives of the employee, the former employer, and the new employer.

In addition, according to the course description, attendees will:

  • Get the latest legislative developments regarding noncompete agreements and best practices from practitioners
  • Learn what the protectable business interest are and how to protect them, particularly with a remote workforce and during employee departures and on-boarding
  • Discover how to use state of the art computer forensics to bolster your case for enforcement, and what it means for the defense
  • Find out advanced practices for seeking and defending against temporary restraining orders, preliminary injunctions, and related preliminary orders
  • Gain insight into the practical aspects of enforcing and defending against noncompetes
  • Understand the key issues and what to do when not just one key employee leaves, but when there is a group lift-out
  • Learn how to spot and avoid the ethical traps common in restrictive covenant matters

The presentation is for any “in-house counsel, business and trade secrets litigation counsel, employment lawyers, human resources professionals, and other allied key strategic personnel.”

For up-to-the-minute analysis of legal issues concerning noncompete agreements in Massachusetts and across the United States, read Russell Beck’s blog, Fair Competition Law.

eck Reed Riden LLP is among the leading authorities in trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition law, and our experience handling these matters is backed by our extensive employment law and business litigation experience. Our hand-picked team combines attorneys with complementary expertise and practical experience.

The Wall Street Journal featured Beck Reed Riden LLP’s noncompete agreement experience. In 2016, the White House issued a report entitled, “Non-Compete Agreements: Analysis of the Usage, Potential Issues, and State Responses,” relying in part on Beck Reed Riden LLP’s research and analysis, including its 50 State Noncompete Survey.

Russell Beck’s work in this area is well recognized, and includes:

  • Over thirty years of experience working on trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition matters
  • Assisting the Obama White House as part of a small working group to develop President Obama’s Noncompete Call to Action
  • Authoring the book Negotiating, Drafting, and Enforcing Noncompetition Agreements and Related Restrictive Covenants (6th ed., MCLE, Inc. 2021), used by other lawyers to help them with their noncompete matters
  • Authoring the book Trade Secrets Law for the Massachusetts Practitioner (1st ed. MCLE 2019), covering trade secrets nationally, with a focus on Massachusetts law
  • Drafting and advising on legislation for the Massachusetts Legislature to define, codify, and improve noncompetition law
  • Teaching Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenants at Boston University School of Law
  • Founding and administering the award-winning blog, Fair Competition Law
  • Establishing and administering the Noncompete Lawyers and Trade Secret Protection groups on LinkedIn, with over 1,660 and 870 members, respectively, around the world
  • Founded and chaired the Trade Secret / Noncompete Practice for an AmLaw 100 firm

In addition, Russell was honored for his work in this area of law in the 2020 Chambers USA Guide, which stated that Russell Beck is “an expert in the field of trade secret and restrictive covenant law,” and is also noted for his “ability to adjust and come up with successful solutions.” Chambers noted that Russell “basically wrote the new Massachusetts statute on noncompetes” and that “he’s an expert in employee mobility and nonrestrictive covenants.”

Beck Reed Riden LLP is Boston’s innovative litigation boutique. Our lawyers have years of experience working with clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups and individuals. We focus on business litigation and employment.

We are experienced litigators and counselors, helping our clients as business partners to resolve issues and develop strategies that best meet our clients’ legal and business needs – before, during, and after litigation. We’re ready to roll up our sleeves and help you. Read more about us, the types of matters we handle, and what we can do for you here.

Intellectual Property Owners Association to Feature Russell Beck

On Monday, September 19, 2022, Russell Beck will be speaking about noncompete agreements at the Intellectual Property Owners Association’s 2022 Annual Meeting.

Ipo org logo.JPG

According to the IPO, the event, which will be held in Los Angeles, “brings together IP professionals from around the world to discuss strategies, trends, and best practices. More than 25 education sessions will be offered on patents, trademarks, copyrights, industrial designs, AI, trade secrets, and professional development.”

Russell’s presentation is titled “Hold on to Your Trade Secrets: The Winds of Change Are Howling Around Employee Non-Compete Agreements.”

The presentation is described as follows:

There is a growing tension between employee mobility, specifically the enforceability of non-compete and non-disclosure agreements post-employment, and strong trade secret protection, both of which intended to promote innovation and stimulate the US economy.

This session will explore this tension and whether the focus on employee mobility is eroding trade secret protection in light of recent developments such as (1) President Biden’s July 2021 Executive Order directing the Federal Trade Commission to consider issuing rules “to curtail the unfair use of non-compete clauses and other clauses or agreements that may unfairly limit worker mobility,” (2) the Uniform Law Commission’s newly proposed Uniform Restrictive Employment Agreements Act for possible adoption by states, and (3) various state laws and proposed legislation promoting employee mobility. Panelists will also explore steps trade secret owners can take in anticipation of recent and potential legislation favoring employee mobility.

Russell’s presentation is scheduled for Monday, September 19, from 2:45pm-3:45pm PT. A complete schedule of events is available here.

The other panelists for the presentation are:

  • Nicholas Clifford, Tucker Ellis LLP
  • Robert Isackson, Leason Ellis LLP
  • Dawn Mertineit, Seyfarth Shaw

The IPO describes its mission as follows:

Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO), established in 1972, is an international trade association representing a “big tent” of diverse companies, law firms, service providers and individuals in all industries and fields of technology that own, or are interested in, intellectual property (IP) rights. IPO membership includes over 125 companies and spans over 30 countries. IPO advocates for effective and affordable IP ownership rights and offers a wide array of services, including supporting member interests relating to legislative and international issues; analyzing current IP issues; providing information and educational services; supporting and advocating for diversity, equity, and inclusion in IP and innovation; and disseminating information to the public on the importance of IP rights.

The IPO’s member organizations include a diverse array of companies and law firms, including Google, Nike, and Novartis.

For up-to-the-minute analysis of legal issues concerning noncompete agreements in Massachusetts and across the United States, read Russell Beck’s blog, Fair Competition Law.

eck Reed Riden LLP is among the leading authorities in trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition law, and our experience handling these matters is backed by our extensive employment law and business litigation experience. Our hand-picked team combines attorneys with complementary expertise and practical experience.

The Wall Street Journal featured Beck Reed Riden LLP’s noncompete agreement experience. In 2016, the White House issued a report entitled, “Non-Compete Agreements: Analysis of the Usage, Potential Issues, and State Responses,” relying in part on Beck Reed Riden LLP’s research and analysis, including its 50 State Noncompete Survey.

Russell Beck’s work in this area is well recognized, and includes:

  • Over thirty years of experience working on trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition matters
  • Assisting the Obama White House as part of a small working group to develop President Obama’s Noncompete Call to Action
  • Authoring the book Negotiating, Drafting, and Enforcing Noncompetition Agreements and Related Restrictive Covenants (6th ed., MCLE, Inc. 2021), used by other lawyers to help them with their noncompete matters
  • Authoring the book Trade Secrets Law for the Massachusetts Practitioner (1st ed. MCLE 2019), covering trade secrets nationally, with a focus on Massachusetts law
  • Drafting and advising on legislation for the Massachusetts Legislature to define, codify, and improve noncompetition law
  • Teaching Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenants at Boston University School of Law
  • Founding and administering the award-winning blog, Fair Competition Law
  • Establishing and administering the Noncompete Lawyers and Trade Secret Protection groups on LinkedIn, with over 1,660 and 870 members, respectively, around the world
  • Founded and chaired the Trade Secret / Noncompete Practice for an AmLaw 100 firm

In addition, Russell was honored for his work in this area of law in the 2020 Chambers USA Guide, which stated that Russell Beck is “an expert in the field of trade secret and restrictive covenant law,”and is also noted for his “ability to adjust and come up with successful solutions.” Chambers noted that Russell “basically wrote the new Massachusetts statute on noncompetes” and that “he’s an expert in employee mobility and nonrestrictive covenants.”

Beck Reed Riden LLP is Boston’s innovative litigation boutique. Our lawyers have years of experience working with clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups and individuals. We focus on business litigationand employment.

We are experienced litigators and counselors, helping our clients as business partners to resolve issues and develop strategies that best meet our clients’ legal and business needs – before, during, and after litigation. We’re ready to roll up our sleeves and help you. Read more about us, the types of matters we handle, and what we can do for you here.

Russell Beck to Speak at PLI Noncompete Agreement Program

On Friday, September 9, 2022, Russell Beck will be speaking at Practising Law Institute’s program on noncompete agreements.

The program, which will be held online, is titled “Level-Setting: A Crash Course in Noncompetes and Other Restrictive Covenants, From Soup to Nuts.”

The one-hour program starts at 1 p.m. ET on September 9, 2022. More information and registration is available here.

Speakers will “provide basics to help [attendees] learn … about restrictive covenant law, including understanding the types of restrictive covenants and protectable interests. ”

In addition, according to the course description, attendees will:

  • Be given an overview of the law of noncompete and other restrictive covenants
  • Get a look into what’s happened recently at the state and federal governments
  • Gain insights into where the law is headed
  • Learn how to know which restrictive covenants to use, and when to use them

The presentation is for any “lawyer or human resources personnel that assists companies or individuals in evaluating, enforcing, and defending against noncompetes and other restrictive covenants, anyone involved in the hiring of employees, and anyone else responsible for an organization’s internal hiring policies or lobbying on related issues.”

The other panelists for the presentation are:

For up-to-the-minute analysis of legal issues concerning noncompete agreements in Massachusetts and across the United States, read Russell Beck’s blog, Fair Competition Law.

eck Reed Riden LLP is among the leading authorities in trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition law, and our experience handling these matters is backed by our extensive employment law and business litigation experience. Our hand-picked team combines attorneys with complementary expertise and practical experience.

The Wall Street Journal featured Beck Reed Riden LLP’s noncompete agreement experience. In 2016, the White House issued a report entitled, “Non-Compete Agreements: Analysis of the Usage, Potential Issues, and State Responses,” relying in part on Beck Reed Riden LLP’s research and analysis, including its 50 State Noncompete Survey.

Russell Beck’s work in this area is well recognized, and includes:

  • Over thirty years of experience working on trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition matters
  • Assisting the Obama White House as part of a small working group to develop President Obama’s Noncompete Call to Action
  • Authoring the book Negotiating, Drafting, and Enforcing Noncompetition Agreements and Related Restrictive Covenants (6th ed., MCLE, Inc. 2021), used by other lawyers to help them with their noncompete matters
  • Authoring the book Trade Secrets Law for the Massachusetts Practitioner (1st ed. MCLE 2019), covering trade secrets nationally, with a focus on Massachusetts law
  • Drafting and advising on legislation for the Massachusetts Legislature to define, codify, and improve noncompetition law
  • Teaching Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenants at Boston University School of Law
  • Founding and administering the award-winning blog, Fair Competition Law
  • Establishing and administering the Noncompete Lawyers and Trade Secret Protection groups on LinkedIn, with over 1,660 and 870 members, respectively, around the world
  • Founded and chaired the Trade Secret / Noncompete Practice for an AmLaw 100 firm

In addition, Russell was honored for his work in this area of law in the 2020 Chambers USA Guide, which stated that Russell Beck is “an expert in the field of trade secret and restrictive covenant law,” and is also noted for his “ability to adjust and come up with successful solutions.” Chambers noted that Russell “basically wrote the new Massachusetts statute on noncompetes” and that “he’s an expert in employee mobility and nonrestrictive covenants.”

Beck Reed Riden LLP is Boston’s innovative litigation boutique. Our lawyers have years of experience working with clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups and individuals. We focus on business litigation and employment.

We are experienced litigators and counselors, helping our clients as business partners to resolve issues and develop strategies that best meet our clients’ legal and business needs – before, during, and after litigation. We’re ready to roll up our sleeves and help you. Read more about us, the types of matters we handle, and what we can do for you here.

1 2