If you have been recently fired from a job and filed an unemployment claim, you may think that you at least have the silver lining of not needing to deal with your previous place of employment anymore. Unfortunately, your former employer can choose to contest your unemployment claim, denying you access to benefits. But what can you do if your employer chooses to contest your unemployment claim?
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Unbeknownst to many workers, when they enter into an agreement with their new employer and sign the paperwork, they may have agreed to a noncompete clause. What this tells the employee is that, if the employee decides to leave, they cannot immediately work for a competitor. These non-competes may also contain restrictions as to where you may work and how long before you can work for a competing company.
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Restrictive covenants are provisions in employment agreements that prohibit a person from working for a competitor after leaving his or her employer. The effect of such clauses varies greatly. In addition from limiting a former employee’s job opportunities, a restrictive covenant allows an employer to restrict the former employee from starting a business or forming a venture with others that competes against the former employer; contacting or soliciting former or current customers or employees of the former employer; and using confidential knowledge, trade secrets and other privileged information learned while working for the former employer. Many employers also place time and geographical restrictions in these covenants.
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A former examiner at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York has claimed she was fired as a result of her complaints about practices at Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. However, a federal district court in New York has dismissed the claim, stating the conduct alleged by the former examiner does not violate the whistleblower protection provisions of the Federal Deposit Insurance Act.
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