Monday, April 6, 2015
An attorney disciplined in Indiana for a contractual provision that limited an associate's post-employment ability to practice was reprimanded as reciprocal discipline by the Kentucky Supreme Court.
The misconduct at issue in this disciplinary action arises from an employment contract Respondent required his new associate attorney to sign as a condition of his hiring. The contract included a "Separation Agreement" (the "Agreement"), which specified that in the event the employment relationship ended, the associate was prohibited from contacting, notifying, or soliciting the clients he obtained while working at Respondent's law firm. Only Respondent had the luxury of notifying the clients of the associate's departure. The Agreement further included a fee arrangement which highly deterred the associate from continuing to represent those clients.
The associate filed the bar complaint in Indiana.
The court rejected private discipline. (Mike Frisch)