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Thomas Swartz
Thomas Swartz, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 3004
Experience:  Twenty one years experience as a lawyer in New York and New Jersey. Former Appellate Law Clerk.
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Can I continue to speak with a former client that I became

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Can I continue to speak with a former client that I became friendly with? I have NOT tried to take her to my new employer and would not ever attempt to do so. This is simply someone that I became friends with.

This is a business client of a former employer? Can you give a little more detail?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Yes. I was an account manager at an accounting office. A former client contacted me and said she was sad I left, and has continued to email me -strictly as a friend, ie, I miss you, we should go to dinner, hope you're well, etc.
Your former employer would really only have a potential claim against you if you disclosed their business secrets to the client, or if you tried to take the client to your new employer (as you mentioned). But just to have a friendly relationship with the client, there is nothing wrong with that. And your former employer can not prevent you from having a friendship with a former client. You just have to be careful that they don't become suspicious and begin to harass you.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
That's what I thought. She mentioned to him that we were going to dinner and he emailed me saying that I need to "refrain from contacting his clients". ButI didn't contact a client -- I made plans with a friend who happens to be his client.

In the niche industry of my expertise, I'm an accounting manager specializing in entertainment clients (writers, producers, actors, musicians, etc) "client stealing" is rampant but It is something I would never do...even though I didn't sign a covenant not to compete or a confidentiality agreement.
You should be fine, particularly since you did not sign any confidentiality agreements or covenants not to compete. This does not mean that the former employer won't harass you about the relationship. But if they ever decided to bring a claim against you, they won't have much to stand on.

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