NOTE: Therapy Playground does NOT enforce any kind of “non-compete” agreement. The text below is what we received from an attorney representing another pediatric therapy clinic after a few of their employees choose to practice therapy with us. Note that Therapy Playground has never signed (and would never sign) any kind of agreement with other clinics regarding non-compete. This is a warning to therapist of the potential legal issues you may run into if you choose to work for a clinic who requires you to sign a “non-compete” agreement. A similar letter was also sent to the therapists. And as you’re aware, all legal cases are public record.
|JENNA C. BORDERS
|Wyrick Robbins Yates & Ponton LLP
ATTORNEYS AT LAW
4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 300, Raleigh, NC 27607
PO Drawer 17803, Raleigh, NC 27619
April 3, 2019
Via Federal Express
Re: Pediatric Developmental Therapy
This law firm represents Pediatric Developmental Therapy, Inc. (“PDT” or the “Company”). Please direct any further communications regarding the matters addressed in this letter to this law firm, to my attention. If you are represented by counsel, please so advise me, and I will direct any further correspondence to you through your attorney.
I am writing concerning your hire of several former Pediatric Developmental Therapy (PDT) employees, including name-redacted and name-redacted. PDT believes that the employment of these individuals is in violation of restrictive covenant agreements entered into between each of these individuals and PDT in the course of their employment. Copies of the Non-Disclosure, Non-Solicitation and Non-Competition Agreements signed by these individuals are enclosed for your reference (the “Agreements”).
The Agreements contain several restrictive covenants, including but not limited to the following:
Confidentiality and Non-Disclosure: An agreement that the employee would not at any time, whether during or after termination of employment, reveal, use or attempt to use any of PDT’s trade secrets or Confidential Information (as defined in the Agreements).
The terms of the Non-Disclosure, Non-Solicitation and Non-Competition Agreement signed differ in several material respects from the terms of the Non-Disclosure, Non-Solicitation and Non-Competition Agreement signed. However, in the interest of efficiency, the covenants are summarized together in this letter. PDT expects and requires each employee to comply with the covenants as set forth in his/her respective Agreement.
Non-Competition: An agreement that the employee would not, for the one (1) year period following the termination of employment, engage in competitive employment as described in the Agreements within the Restricted Territory (as defined in the Agreements).
Non-Solicitation of Clients and Patients: An agreement that the employee would not, for the one (1) year period following his/her termination, directly or indirectly solicit certain clients, business partners, or patients (as described in the Agreements) or induce such clients, business partners, or patients to limit or cease doing business with or obtaining services from the Company.
Non-Solicitation of Employees and Independent Contractors: An agreement that the employee would not directly or indirectly solicit any employee or independent contractor of the Company for the purpose of inducing that person to either be employed or engaged in a competing business or to terminate his or her employment with or engagement by the Company.
Despite agreeing to the foregoing terms, name-redacted and name-redacted have accepted employment with Therapy Playground, a direct competitor of PDT, in clear violation of the non-competition provision of the Agreements. PDT is also concerned that Therapy Playground’s employment of name-redacted and name-redacted may result in their contacting or soliciting PDT patients and clients and/or divulging confidential information and trade secret information of PDT in further violation of the Agreements. In addition, to the extent either of these employees recruited the other away from PDT, such conduct would be in violation of the employee non-solicitation covenants in their Agreements.
We are bringing this matter to your attention and request your cooperation in preventing any future breach of PDT’s Agreements by name-redacted and name-redacted. PDT has made substantial investments in its employees and patient and client relationships and is entitled to the full benefit and legal protection of the Agreements. We trust that you will take appropriate measures to assist PDT in this regard. In light of the foregoing, please contact me by no later than Wednesday, April 10, 2019 to confirm that:
1. Therapy Playground will not employ name-redacted and name-redacted, accept services from name-redacted and name-redacted or otherwise aid or assist name-redacted and name-redacted in competitive employment during the Restricted Period;
2. Therapy Playground will not directly or indirectly allow, aid, assist or encourage name-redacted and name-redacted to solicit or otherwise call upon any PDT patient or client on behalf of or for the benefit of Therapy Playground;
3. Therapy Playground will not directly or indirectly allow, aid, assist or encourage name-redacted and name-redacted to solicit or otherwise induce any PDT employee or independent contractor on behalf of or for the benefit of Therapy Playground; and
Wyrick Robbins Yates & Ponton LLP
4. Therapy Playground has not and will not accept, use or retain any trade secrets or confidential business information of PDT, including but not limited to client and patient information, records and company business information.
If we do not receive the above-requested written assurances, PDT will take such other and further legal action as it believes necessary to protect its legitimate business interests.
This letter does not purport to be a complete statement of the facts or law and is without prejudice to Pediatric Developmental Therapy’s rights and claims, which are expressly reserved. Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.
WYRICK ROBBINS YATES & PONTON LLP
cc: Haden Boliek (via email)
Wyrick Robbins Yates & Ponton LLP