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Non-solicitation clause found to be breached, despite employee and customers’ testimonies that there had been no solicitation

David Reid
9th Nov 2012

In a recent case, the High Court determined that there had been a breach of a non-solicitation clause by an ex-employee even though the customers concerned denied having been solicited by him.

This case concerned a director of a security company who resigned his position. Within days of the resignation two customers terminated their relationship with the company in favour of a new start-up company which had yet to fully establish itself commercially.

 

The start-up company was incorporated by the director in collaboration with a more junior employee of the company who had also resigned his position on the same day as the director. The director and the customers denied solicitation. However, the junior employee’s evidence indicated an unusually close relationship between them over a key period, and the disclosure of various text and telephone communications also contradicted their evidence. Consequently, the Court found that the director and former customers’ denials of solicitation were not credible.

 

The case emphasises the importance of credible testimony and the need for testimony to be consistent when weighed against the evidence.

 

Case name: Safetynet Security Limited v Coppage [2012] EWHC B11 (Mercantile)

Case No. 2BM40032

 

Case can be found here.

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