Orrick's Shawn Butte and James McQuade recently spoke with Law360 about the biggest noncompete decisions that have occurred so far this year. Shawn discussed a recent case in Massachusetts, which passed a 2018 law reining in noncompetes. He noted that "the new law doesn't create public policy that prevents applying another state's laws to a noncompete, but employers still have to have a real connection to another state to escape Massachusetts law going forward."
In another case on the West Coast, a recent California ruling shows hostility towards nonsolicitation agreements may be a trend. Shawn agreed and noted that "the landscape in California is changing," with Jim adding that, "It's quite possible we could see another couple decisions [this year] and they very well could go the other way on this issue."