Restrictive covenants

A restrictive covenant is an agreement (usually a clause within a contract of employment) between an employer and an employee that restrains the employee from carrying out certain actions both during employment and in the event that the employment ceases.

The actions that covenants commonly seek to prevent a former employee from carrying out include: competing with the employer, taking the employer's trade secrets and soliciting the employer's clients and/or staff.

Restrictive covenants

Almost half of employers at risk by failing to review restrictive covenants

29 Jun 2015

Almost half of businesses have not done an audit of senior employees’ contracts in the past year, despite one in...

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Employee misconduct: how to protect the business

10 Jun 2015

A business faced with potentially serious employee misconduct, particularly by someone senior, will face some difficult choices and risks. Yvonne...

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How employers can protect confidential information

29 Apr 2015

Recent statistics have indicated a rise in the number of attempts by employees or former employees to misappropriate an employer’s...

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How do you stop old employees poaching clients they are connected to on LinkedIn?

Protecting LinkedIn contacts: how to stop departing employees poaching clients

7 Jan 2015

The risk of employees using contact lists to poach clients when they leave an organisation is nothing new, but the...

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Garden leave: Gardening is not obligatory

Garden leave: the employer’s prerogative

16 Dec 2014

Meriel Schindler, head of employment at Withers LLP,  looks at how employers should respond to employee resignations and how to...

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Key tips for avoiding errors when drafting restrictive covenants

29 Aug 2014

Restrictive covenants are one of the key weapons in the fight against unlawful competition by former employees. Drafting enforceable restrictions...

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When can courts allow inspection of employees’ home computers?

24 Jun 2014

The recent case of Warm Zones v Thurley and Buckley is an important High Court decision that has given increased...

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Garden leave

Is garden leave overrated?

18 Dec 2013

Charles Wynn-Evans questions whether garden leave is all it is cracked up to be or if there are hidden pitfalls...

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Legal opinion: When are restrictive covenants enforceable?

11 Jun 2013

Barrister Paras Gorasia looks at how employers can improve the chances of a restrictive covenant being enforceable. When and whether...

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Legal opinion: Is it gross misconduct to set up in competition to your employer?

24 Aug 2012

As the private sector continues to battle Britain’s economic woes and jobs are shed on a weekly basis, a growing...

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Legal opinion: When are non-solicitation clauses enforceable?

12 Mar 2012

Towry EJ Limited v Raymond James & Others, which dealt with restrictive covenants in the financial services sector, was the...

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Legal opinion: Taking a proactive stance on competitor poaching

19 Sep 2011

As the economy recovers, competition for skilled employees increases. In order to grow the business, many companies aim to recruit...

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Weekly dilemma: Post-termination restrictions

2 Mar 2011

I’ve just finished interviewing for a senior sales position in my technology company, but if the successful applicant doesn’t work...

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Weekly dilemma: restrictive covenants

25 Feb 2010

Q I am the director of a popular advertising agency. According to company policy, all of our senior staff have...

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M&S CEO Bolland banned from poaching former Morrisons colleagues

22 Feb 2010

Incoming Marks & Spencer chief executive Marc Bolland will be prevented from poaching executives from Morrisons for a year, it...

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