1/1/2016In a recent filing in a New York court, the international corporation IBM filed its fifth lawsuit in recent years against a former employee who left the company to go work for a competitor. The prospect of facing a breach of contract lawsuit by your former boss is daunting for many people. Unfortunately, as the IBM cases demonstrate, these lawsuits can and do happen. If you are the named defendant in such a suit, it is essential that you contact an experienced New York breach of contract attorney immediately to protect your legal rights.
What will your former employer have to prove in order to win in its breach of contract claim against you? The answer depends on the facts and circumstances surrounding the specific allegations being made. Generally speaking, however, the employer will have to show:
- that there was an enforceable agreement between the employer and the employee;
- that the employer fulfilled its obligations under that agreement;
- that the employee breached the agreement; and
- that the employer sustained damages as a direct result of the employee’s failure to fulfill his obligations under the contract.
IBM’s apparent motivation for going after its former employees stems from those employees’ leaving the company to work for competitors. The lesson that can be learned from this is that employees should consider consulting a New York business litigation attorney before taking actions that may or may not violate an agreement with an employer. Even if there is no written agreement in place, the employer might still have a claim. Our free New York breach of contract guide, When You Don’t Have a Written Agreement, outlines what can happen even absent a written contract.
To learn more about lawsuits brought by employers against former employees, contact a New York breach of contract lawyer at (888) 497-3410.