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Fifield v. Premier Dealer Services, Inc.

Articles Discussing Case:

Are Your Restrictive Covenants Enforceable In Light Of The Illinois Supreme Court’s Appeal Denial Of Fifield?

Ogletree Deakins • October 18, 2013
Continuing the saga of whether continued employment is sufficient consideration to support a restrictive covenant agreement, the Illinois Supreme Court, on September 25, refused to review Fifield v. Premier Dealer Services, Inc., No. 1-12-0327, 2013 IL App (1st) 120327 (Jun. 24, 2013)—a controversial Illinois Appellate Court decision on the enforceability of restrictive covenants. The Illinois Supreme Court’s decision means that Fifield’s mandate that two-years of continued employment is required for an employer to enforce a post-employment restrictive covenant is now binding precedent in a large part of Illinois.

Illinois Supreme Court’s Refusal to Review Restrictive Covenant Decision Leaves Employers with Uncertainty

Ogletree Deakins • October 16, 2013
The Illinois Supreme Court’s recent refusal to review the Illinois Appellate Court’s controversial decision in Fifield v. Premier Dealer Services, Inc., No. 1-12-0327, 2013 IL App (1st) 120327 (Jun. 24, 2013) leaves employers with uncertainty about the appropriate consideration to support employee restrictive covenant agreements at hire.

Illinois Supreme Court Lets Controversial Non-Competition Case Stand October 14, 2013

Franczek Radelet P.C • October 14, 2013
In July 2013, we reported on the First District Appellate Court’s ruling in Fifield et al. v. Premier Dealer Services, Inc., in which the court upended Illinois law regarding what consideration is needed to create an enforceable post-employment non-compete agreement. Before Fifield, the conventional wisdom in Illinois was that, at least at the outset of employment, an employer need not offer an employee any additional consideration beyond at-will employment in exchange for a non-compete agreement. In Fifield, the Appellate Court rejected that reasoning, holding that at-will employment is valid consideration for a non-compete agreement only if the employee is actually employed for at least two years after signing the agreement. Under Fifield, if at-will employment is the only consideration offered in exchange for a non-compete agreement, the agreement will be rendered void if the employee’s employment ends for any reason before the two-year mark. (A full summary of the decision is available in our July 2013 alert.)

Focus On Restrictive Covenants: Illinois Supreme Court Rejects Petition for Leave to Appeal in Fifield

Vedder Price • October 14, 2013
In July 2013, we reported on the decision by the Illinois Appellate Court for the First District in Fifield v. Premier Dealer Servs., Inc., No. 1–12–0327, 2013 WL 3192931 (June 24, 2013). The Appellate Court ruled that there must be at least two years or more of continued employment to constitute adequate consideration in support of a restrictive covenant where no other consideration is provided. See id. at *4–5. The court’s ruling applies to all at-will employees, new or existing, who have not reached at least two years of continued employment after execution of a restrictive covenant agreement. This two-year threshold throws into question the enforceability of any restrictive covenant applicable to an at-will employee with less than two years of service whose agreement is governed by Illinois law.

Noncompete News: Illinois Appellate Court Finds Restrictive Covenant Unenforceable; Continued Employment of at Least Two Years Required

FordHarrison LLP • July 24, 2013
In a decision handed down June 24, 2013, the Illinois Appellate Court, First District, found a restrictive covenant unenforceable due to lack of adequate consideration. Although this is not the first time an Illinois court has held that there must be at least two years of continued employment to constitute adequate consideration to support a restrictive covenant, the ruling in this case was remarkable because:

Illinois Appellate Court Case May Change Landscape on Consideration Necessary to Support Restrictive Covenants Signed by At-Will Employees

Vedder Price • July 18, 2013
The Illinois Appellate Court for the First District has ruled that the commencement of at-will employment is not adequate consideration to support the enforcement of post employment restrictive covenants.

A Sea Change—Illinois Appellate Court Issues Key Ruling on Restrictive Covenant Agreements

Ogletree Deakins • July 16, 2013
The Illinois Appellate Court’s recent opinion in Fifield v. Premier Dealer Services, Inc. takes an aggressive stance on continued employment as consideration to support enforcement of a non-competition or non-solicitation agreement.