We understand that unfair competition challenges the very core of a company’s business by putting at risk a company’s customer relationships and competitively sensitive information. Given current trends of high employee turnover and mobility, it is important for companies to have well-drafted, enforceable restrictive covenants, and counsel who can aggressively and effectively enforce them through litigation. Our attorneys advise clients, across industries, on how to avoid unfair competition lawsuits in the first place and, when necessary, litigate in federal and state court to protect their interests and their business. Our extensive experience in this area of the law allows us to add value and insights that help our clients maximize the protection available to them.
Our attorneys have broad experience in all aspects of unfair competition counseling and litigation, including:
- Drafting restrictive covenants - non-competes, non-solicitation clauses, and non-disclosure clauses - tailored to our clients’ particular needs and industries, to give employers the best chance of enforcing the agreements should they be litigated.
- Filing emergency injunction litigation when there is a need to take quick and effective action to shut down ongoing or threatened customer solicitation, information disclosures, or other conduct that could seriously harm our clients’ interests.
- Counseling clients who are considering hiring an employee who is subject to a restrictive covenant with a current or former employer, so as to minimize the risk that they could be sued for inducing a breach of the restrictive covenant or unwittingly being party to disclosures of protected information.
- Helping employers protect their interests when they do not have restrictive covenants in place, by using trade secret doctrines, common law legal duties, consumer fraud statutes, and other creative theories.
- Counseling clients as to how they can manage and administer their businesses and information so as to increase the likelihood that their confidential and trade secret information will be protected.
- Advising multi-state employers as to the law of different states that applies to restrictive covenant and unfair competition issues.
- Providing counseling regarding complex restrictive covenant issues such as rolling out restrictive covenants for an existing workforce, or determining whether and how to compensate employees for restrictive covenants where consideration is required.
- Advising clients regarding unfair competition in non-employee settings such as the sale or purchase of a business.
- Working with members of our intellectual property team to incorporate the appropriate protections for patents, trademarks, and copyrights and litigating other intellectual property theories which can arise in unfair competition cases.
News & Press Releases
- Crain's Chicago Business, October 25, 2018
- Law360, May 28, 2018
- Julie Proscia Appointed to Serve on Illinois Senate Task Force on Sexual Discrimination and Harassment Awareness & PreventionNovember 17, 2017
- November 2, 2017
- October 27, 2017
- Crain's Chicago Business, September 15, 2017
- Equality Illinois, August 1, 2017
- Heather Bailey and her Team Raise Nearly $16,000 for the 2017 Chicago Polar Plunge Benefitting the Special Olympics ChicagoChicago Tribune; Chicago Sun Times, March 5, 2017
- SmithAmundsen Sponsors Institute for Law and the Workplace Scholarship for Chicago-Kent College of Law StudentsOctober 2016
- Crain's Chicago Business, September 10, 2016
- August 15, 2016
- The American Lawyer, August 2016
- Equality Illinois, July 8, 2016
- Above the Law, April 18, 2016
- Above the Law, April 13, 2016
- Illinois State Bar Association Diversity Matters Newsletter , June 2017
- Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education, 2015
Presentations & Events
- December 31, 2019
- The Horton Group; Webinar, June 12, 2019
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce, Webinar, December 5, 2018
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce, Webinar, July 12, 2018
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce; Glen Ellyn, IL, February 27, 2018
- SmithAmundsen Seminar, Chicago, IL; Webinar, February 21, 2018
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce; Webinar, August 8, 2017
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce; Tinley Park, IL, July 27, 2017
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce; Springfield, IL, July 19, 2017
- Illinois Chamber of Commece; Effingham, IL, July 13, 2017
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce; Webinar, June 14, 2017
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce; Webinar, June 13, 2017
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce; Glen Ellyn, IL, May 31, 2017
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce; Naperville, IL, April 27, 2017
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce, Seminar; Waukegan, IL, April 20, 2017
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce, Seminar; Glen Ellyn, IL, April 11, 2017
- SmithAmundsen, Seminar; Chicago, IL, February 16, 2017
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce; Webinar, January 31, 2017
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce, Seminar; Peoria, IL, January 26, 2017
- National Business Institute, Seminar; Chicago, IL, December 5, 2016
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce, Seminar, November 30, 2016
- National Automatic Merchandising Association, Webinar, November 15, 2016
- SmithAmundsen Chicago, IL; Webinar, November 10, 2016
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce, Effingham, IL, July 7, 2016
- SmithAmundsen, Webinar, June 22, 2016
- Illinois Chamber of Commerce, Bolingbrook, IL, December 8, 2015