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Non compete

Discussion in 'Business Fundamentals' started by peteo1, Dec 19, 2015.

  1. peteo1

    peteo1 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,660

    So the quick version of whats happening, we signed a non compete with the guy we subbed for last year. He decided to end our partnership and fired us after the season which we're fine with. Fast forward to this year, a lady who he worked for last year has four accounts. He told her he wasn't renewing her contract for this season because he was downsizing and only plowing for his landscape customers. She came to us, asked for a price and ultimately gave us the contract. While I'm out plowing this am the guy we used to sub for is taking pictures of me. When I confronted him he tells me that I'm in violation of the non compete. I'm of the mind that since he let the accounts go then they are fair game. Worse comes to worse if we end up in front of the magistrate and we have to let these places go so be it but I dont see where I would be in violation of anything. Probably going to make a call to the attorney Monday to see what the best route would be. I'm just wonderingif I'm in the wrong here
  2. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 9,883

    I agree with you,
    If he drooped them if so you are no longer in competition for them.
    They are a free agent and you are free to solicit them.

    If hes want to protest, let him take ya to court.
  3. FredG

    FredG PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,384

    You have nothing to worry about, The non compete thing is only good when your together. He decided to pass on the work that you got from the women and you are not working for him as he fired you.

    He would look like the fool he is in any court of law. It's not just he let them contracts go. The main thing you are not subbing for him. The non compete only would work if you were still subbing with him. It's not a life time agreement. Don't give any legal fee's out yet.

    He sounds like a confused blowhard.:nod:Thumbs Up
  4. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    At 20.00 an hour for plowing.I doubt he'll have enough money to hire a lawyer
  5. Mr.Markus

    Mr.Markus PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,779

    Your contract with him last season is over/completed. So so is the non compete as a clause of that contract.
  6. 160SR

    160SR Junior Member
    from nh
    Messages: 27

    You didn't solicit them, they called you. He's SOL.
  7. framer1901

    framer1901 Senior Member
    Messages: 852

    Lottery day dreamer he is.

    A "No Compete" could mean a variety of things depending on how it's worded. I'd doubt it'd prevent you from working for someone that pursued you unless you approached them or communicated with them first.
  8. FredG

    FredG PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,384

    When he dismissed you no compete is over period. Next season you can bid everything he does. What could he tell the judge with any value? Your honor I decided to drop some clients that are not my landscape clients. The only problem is I had a no compete clause in my contract with Mr P before I fired him and after are contract was up.

    This is unjust even though I passed on the jobs and I have no connection with MR P. You know this guy we don't. Could he possibly be this much of a dumb a$$. Oh I forgot you did say he took pictures.

    I'm surprised he made it though puberty. :realmad:
  9. cbservicesllc

    cbservicesllc PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,532

  10. Randall Ave

    Randall Ave PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,581

    How bout you post that section of the contract you had with him.
  11. jonniesmooth

    jonniesmooth Senior Member
    Messages: 296

    none compete

    I guess it could be possible that in your original contract the clause could say "blah,blah,blah, agrees to not work for or to solicit our customers for X number of seasons if our relationship is terminated for any reason."

    But good luck enforcing it.
  12. BUFF

    BUFF PlowSite Fanatic
    from FR NoCo
    Messages: 9,066

    Like Farmer said you should be in good shape.
    If the woman has an email from the old contractor saying he's not renewing and a email to you requesting service you'd be golden.
  13. peteo1

    peteo1 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,660

    Sounds good guys, thats kind of what my line of thinking was. I'm going to talk to my customer monday morning and see if I can get something from her stating what happened. It's really irritating having to deal with a person who acts like a petulant child
  14. leolkfrm

    leolkfrm PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,978

    sounds like he saw a light winter and is trying to get the seasonal back!...made his bed, you owe him nothing, if he thinks he has a claim so be it...bet he is just blowing smoke
  15. basher

    basher PlowSite Fanatic
    from 19707
    Messages: 8,993

    Take your paperwork, go see a lawyer, most will consult for free, there's a LOT of bad advice in this thread. no one can tell you what the state of the noncompete was without reading it and knowing the laws governing them in your location.
  16. FredG

    FredG PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,384

    This could be true if the OP was still with him, Furthermore when he fired him this would void any agreement with the OP. I don't care how it was worded it still has to get passed the Judge.

    I think the guy that the OP was subbing for is a blowhard and wants that work back and is trying to muscle the OP out of the work. The PO contacted the OP because the other guy passed on the work.

    I will stick to my story as I think the guy has nothing of any value to any Judge in PA.
  17. TCLA

    TCLA 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,707

    To the OP, The guy you subbed for last year has you by the shorthairs. It's safe to assume that since he has spent the time documenting your violation, he will start pulling on them very soon. If you find yourself in front of a magistrate you will not be able to cloud the issue on the reasons why he doesn't have that contract this year, or how you came about it. He has a legal document with your written agreement not to compete by serviceing the site.

    If it is strongly and properly written and does not violate your states laws on competing, the good news is you will have the opportunity to negotiate through the magistrate. The bad news is you will have to go through the process and you will have to pay a penalty of some sort.

    The basher has given you the best advice on this thread. Take it seriously and have a lawyer review the verbiage that you agreed to.
  18. 32vld

    32vld Senior Member
    from LI, NY
    Messages: 622

    He has nothing by nothing.

    He fired the OP.

    He can not deny the OP the right to make a living at what he is skilled at.

    He can not claim competition when he dumped the customer and left the customer in need of someone to provide them with service.

    I would not care what he says or how many photos he takes.

    All OP has to do is keep plowing, wait for legal action to take place then get a good lawyer and this will then be laughed out of court.
    mountainsnow likes this.
  19. Randall Ave

    Randall Ave PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,581

    Again, post that area of the contract so we can see whats there.
  20. FredG

    FredG PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,384

    Well said, This guy is lucky I'm not the OP, Once I saw him taking pics it's on now. I could do without the thorn I'd be. The op could counter sue for being brought into court for such a ridiculous allegation and legal fee's.