Company alleges client lured away its co-founder

A company’s most valuable asset is its workforce. Its employees may be the reason behind its reputation and brand loyalty, which ultimately allows it to compete in its market. For this reason, it may not be surprising to hear that a local business in Daytona Beach is willing to go so far as to litigate in order to ensure that its employees are not poached away by competitors (or in answer to unfair and/or unethical recruiting practices). 

An application development firm recently filed a lawsuit in North Carolina over this very issue. It was approached last year by another company looking for assistance in developing an app as well as creating a website. A stipulation was added to the contract the two companies entered into that the client company would not attempt to hire away any of the firm’s employees for at least two years. One of the firm’s co-founders was deeply involved in the project, eventually going so far as to leave the firm for a new position with the client company. The firm’s lawsuit states that the client company’s solicitation of its co-founder was in violation of that agreement. It also alleges that the co-founder and the client company colluded in deceiving the firm that payment for its services would be forthcoming, when in reality the client’s aim was to recruit the co-founder to its side in order to finish the project in-house. 

The complexity of this case may seem to make it an outlier, yet in reality, many business disputes can become this complicated. Because of this, companies needing to seek action against a competitor may do well to seek out the services of an attorney familiar with business litigation.