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Grimaldi’s Pizzeria Involved in New York Non-Compete Battle


Posted on Jan 01, 2016

The current owner and the original proprietor of Grimaldi’s, a famous New York coal-oven pizzeria, are embroiled in a legal battle. 

Frank Ciolli bought the restaurant at its original location, along with naming rights, from Patsy Grimaldi in 1998. In the fall of 2011, Ciolli was forced by the landlord to move the restaurant from its longtime location to a spot nearby. The coal oven stayed at the original location.

Grimaldi shortly thereafter announced his intention to open a pizza restaurant called Juliana’s in the old location. Ciolli then filed a lawsuit seeking an injunction to prevent Grimaldi from opening the new restaurant. In the lawsuit, Ciolli alleges that Grimaldi signed a non-compete agreement when he sold the pizza business in 1998. 

Grimaldi asserts that the covenant not to compete expired approximately three years ago. The 81-year-old restaurateur further asserts that he has a great financial need to work again because of the recession. Should the two parties reach a settlement, Grimaldi and his wife plan to open Juliana’s by the end of 2012.

Agreeing to a non-compete provision can create significant financial hardship in the future, should you find yourself facing financial difficulties and be unable to work within your skillset or geographic area. For this reason, it is vital that you contact an experienced New York non-compete lawyer before signing any type of non-compete agreement. To learn more, or for more information about other business litigation matters, call our office today at (888) 497-3410. 

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