Gagen, Mccoy, McMahon, Koss, Markowitz & Fanucci Inter-Office Memorandum
Quidel Corporation v. Superior Court (2020) 57 Cal.App.5th 155. This is sort of an interesting application of Business and Professions Code § 16600. The court finds that an exclusive dealing agreement between two sophisticated biotechnology companies was not automatically an invalid restraint on trade pursuant to Business and Professions Code §16600, but rather that a “rule of reason” applies in determining the validity of the contractual provision by which a business is restrained from engaging in a lawful trade of business with another business.
Brown v. TGS Management Company, LLC (2020) 57 Cal.App.5th 303 is another interesting Business and Professions Code § 16600 case. In this case an employee had a contractual provision in an employment agreement which among other things included a confidential information provision that barred the employee in perpetuity from disclosing or using confidential information with confidential information so broadly defined as to prevent him from ever being able to work in the securities trading business again, much less in his chosen specialty of statistical arbitrage.
The court found that this provision, although found in the confidentiality section in the agreement, was sufficiently broad to be a violation of Business and Professions Code § 16600, essentially prohibiting the employee from ever working again in his chosen field of employment.
Triyar Hospitality Management, LLC v. WSI (II) – HWP, LLC (2020) 57 Cal.App.5th 636. In this case the court allowed a judgment creditor to amend a judgment to add the owners of a limited liability company as judgment debtors. Judgment had earlier been entered against the limited liability company. The court held that there was overwhelming evidence of the unity of interest in ownership such that the separate personalities of the company and the owners did not exist. The underlying owners had controlled the company in the litigation and had participated in that litigation. The court found that it would be inequitable to preclude the creditor from collecting this judgment by treating the company as a separate entity.
Foroudi v. The Aerospace Corp. (2020) 57 Cal.App.5th 992. In this case an employee contended that he had been discriminated against on the basis of age. However the facts sufficiently indicated that the employer, which had conducted a companywide reduction in force, did not terminate Plaintiff because of the age of the employee, but that it had a legitimate, non-discriminatory reason for the termination, and accordingly summary judgment was granted for the employer.
Gregory L. McCoy