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Dimitry K., Esq.
Dimitry K., Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 41221
Experience:  Multiple jurisdictions, specialize in business/contract disputes, estate creation and administration.
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if I quit my job at brand X, can I contact & pursue my old

Customer Question

if I quit my job at brand X, can I contact & pursue my old clients that i had at Brand X
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Dimitry K., Esq. replied 3 years ago.
Thank you for your question. Please permit me to assist you with your concerns.

That depends. Was there a non-compete agreement in place or a non-solicitation clause that you signed while working for this employer?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I believe not, one has not been mentioned. I don't remember signing one but I worked there for 9.5 years you sign a lot of papers over a decade

Expert:  Dimitry K., Esq. replied 3 years ago.

Thank you for your follow-up, Brett.

My answer is strongly dependent on whether or not a non-compete exists. If you signed something like that, the company could seek to limit you from soliciting and directly attempting to compete against your current employer. Otherwise they have no legal basis or right to pursue you, other than potentially for 'tortious interference of a business interest' and for unfairly competing against them. This is a very very tough argument to make for them because it has to go beyond 'normal' competition and become somehow illegal (such as if you were telling these clients information that would make them leave the company that may be untrue). Beyond that, you are free to compete and free to solicit, but to potentially avoid litigation it would likely be wiser to simply contact past clients and inform them that you now work somewhere else, what your services would be, and that you are now happy to assist. That is not a direct solicitation and harder to pursue.

Good luck.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX later is exactly what I am doing. telling them that I am somewhere else now and if they need my services then please contact me. The problem is that I have received a threatening call from my previous boss regarding this. He said that I better stop contacting brand x customers or else. etc, etc. so thats why I am asking

Expert:  Dimitry K., Esq. replied 3 years ago.

Brett,

Thank you for your follow-up. If they sent you a cease and desist letter, then it may be wise to stop contacting past customers beyond what you have already done. That is not because you cannot pursue them, but purely because the employer has deeper pockets than you and has the ability to arguably pursue litigation for tortious interference and also possibly for industrial espionage (yes, really) for removing the client lists that arguably belong to the employer and then using it to contact their own employees. I am not stating that they would win, but that threat of litigation should they act upon it may cost you more time and resources than it would to the employer, and ultimately harm your own business more than it would harm their interests. This is a very subjective question, so they may be able to convince the judge that they are a victim, but you personally simply do not need the possible financial drain if you can escape it.

Good luck.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I have received no letter. and I do understand what you are saying. I was really thinking that I might send them a letter letting them know that one of their higher-up General Managers is contacting me with threatening language and ask them to stop pursuing me

Expert:  Dimitry K., Esq. replied 3 years ago.

Brett,

Doing so will escalate this situation. You are free to do so, but if you end up being pursued because of it, and essentially informing the company that you are soliciting their customers, it may end up costing you. Your choice, of course, but that might not be the most prudent course.

Good luck.