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Connecting On Social Media: Do Invitations To Connect Violate A Covenant Not To Compete?

Illinois is a relatively employee-friendly state when it comes to the enforcement of covenants not to compete. This friendliness was exemplified in a decision by an Illinois appellate panel which held that an invitation to former colleagues of his prior employer to connect on LinkedIn did not violate a non-solicitation agreement with his former employer which prohibited him from “inducing” former colleagues to join him at a competitor. The particular invitation also included a job announcement which was available at the competitor to which the colleagues were directed once they had made the connection.

The court ruled that in order to have violated his contract, the former employee would have had to actually and directly recruit individuals working in the geographic area to which the non-solicitation agreement applied.

About Alan Sohn

Alan E. Sohn received his Juris Doctorate from the College of Law of the University of Illinois. Mr. Sohn has been a partner in both large and smaller law firms and for the past 21 years has been in private practice. Mr. Sohn - Chicago Estate Planning Lawyer and Business Attorney - is admitted to practice law by the Illinois Supreme Court, the Trial Bar of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals and the United States Supreme Court. He is also a member of the Chicago Estate Planning Council and the Illinois State Bar Association.
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