Can my current employer sue my for taking business away from them?

I am a Sales Executive and I am looking to leave my company to work for another company similar in business. I plan on taking my accounts with me; can my current company sue me? I never signed a non-compete.

3 answers  |  asked Mar 30, 2011 10:07 PM [EST]  |  applies to California

Answers (3)

Janet M. Koehn
I wholeheartedly agree with George and Elisa (who are colleagues of mine). If you are a "sales executive", you need to find an attorney experienced and well versed in executive employment agreements and the law of noncompete and pay her/him for her expert advice. You can find an attorney with such expertise on the website of the California Employment Lawyers Association,

"A lawyer's time and advice are his stock in trade." A. Lincoln

posted by Janet M. Koehn  |  Mar 31, 2011 3:39 PM [EST]
George Allen
Even in the absence of a non-compete agreement, there are limits on what you can do. I suggest that you sit down with an attorney who knows this area of the law. That attorney can provide invaluable guidance about what is off limits.

posted by George Allen  |  Mar 31, 2011 09:41 AM [EST]
Elisa Ungerman
Potentially yes. Non-compete only refers to the ability of you personally to go to another job; it does not mean that you can "steal" business away from your current employer. There are right ways and very wrong ways to leave a company under your circumstances. It is well worth the investment to seek counsel and advice of a competent business attorney who can develop the 'safe" plan for you to leave and allow your accounts to follow you on their own choice. If you don't and the accounts follow you, however that occurs, you may be in for a rough ride.

posted by Elisa Ungerman  |  Mar 30, 2011 11:50 PM [EST]

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